Explore how you can modify E. coli bacteria to produce proteins of your choice; that is, genetic engineering: the direct manipulation of an organism's genes using biotechnology. We’ll also review and tear down the DNA Playground: an affordable all-in-one hardware platform that’s simple enough for middle-school students to use to genetically engineer bacteria.
This time, we’ll explore a technology used on a daily basis by super-sleuths: gel electrophoresis. In addition to examining the step-by-step process of how to obtain pure samples of charged molecules with little more than seaweed gelatin, a plastic chamber, and a DC power supply, we’ll review some DNA basics and see why gel electrophoresis is a cornerstone to many DIY Biotech projects.
Build an Arduino-based spectrophotometer to explore how the optical density of bacteria suspended in a liquid can be used to measure the rate and stage of bacteria growth.
In this DIY Biotech article, we’ll look at an Open Source Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) Thermocycler kit. In addition to learning about DNA amplification, we’ll cover thermal sensing, thermal resistance, the thermoelectric effect, and PID controllers.
Do-it-yourself biology is a growing biotechnological social movement in which individuals, communities, and small organizations study biology and life science using the same methods as traditional research institutions. In this first installment of a series of DIY Biotech articles, we’ll look at bacterial fermentation in the form of yogurt making. Not only is this a low-cost, low-risk entry into practical DIY biotech, you’ll learn a lot about monitoring pH as well.