DIYbio Groningen at the Mini Maker Faire 2013

The OpenPCR at the Groningen MakerFaire
The OpenPCR at the Groningen Maker Faire

The 12th of October 2013 DIYbio Groningen participated at the local Mini Maker Faire with the PCR workshop. This workshop aimed to show to the citizens the PCR machine at work, spread knowledge and awareness about DNA technology. Enthusiasts from DIYbio Groningen together with  Pieter van Boheemen from Amsterdam’s Waag society presented the OpenPCR machine and involved people to make DNA experiment.

 

 

 

Who is the father?

Comparing the DNA bands of parents and children you can distinguish the family relationship
Comparing the DNA bands of parents and children you can distinguish the family relationship

People loved to see the PCR machine running – most of them saw the DNA amplification for the very fist time in real life. Children participated and some parents were curious to find out the DNA linkage with their kids. We tackled this task and succeeded to show the family relations via the DNA fingerprint test. In short, we amplified the so-called “cheeks DNA” of twelve participants with the primers specific for the D1S80 locus – one of many DNA locus used for DNA profiling. Despite the fact that just before sampling people were drinking coffee and having their sandwiches,

DNA of all twelve participants showed distinguishable patterns!

DNA fingerprints of participants 1-6
DNA fingerprints of participants 1-6

Moreover, all families could see the DNA similarities between parents and kids. FAMILY 1: Participants 1, 2, 4 who shared DNA band of 600 bp (base pairs) (pink marks). FAMILY 2: Participants 5, 6, 7 who shared DNA bands at 500 bp (green marks), 600 bp (orange marks), 700 bp (red marks). The first and the last lines with many bands are standards of DNA with know lengths which are used to estimate the length of the tested DNA fragments (from 50 to 1350 base pairs – see the reference at the left, note that the reference is shifted).

DNA fingerprints of participants 7-12
DNA fingerprints of participants 7-12

Many people agreed that PCR technology should be available to the whole community from families to the high school children. They liked the idea of having a PCR machine at home to play with DNA. The same evening we got emailed by several new friends.

 

 

More workshops will follow soon

 

To learn more about DNA amplification visit the link:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2KoLnIwoZKU

The protocol we used:
http://www.babec.org/files/2011_PCR/D1S80_Student_Guide_Fall_2011.pdf

 

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