Bring polymerase chain reaction (PCR) and electrophoresis into your classroom with the Taste of Genetics PTC MiniLab! This fun and engaging Mendelian genetics lab allows students to identify their phenotype for bitter taste and investigate their genotype for the bitter taste gene, TAS2R38. Students will extract their own DNA, amplify a region of interest of the gene, use a restriction digest assay to cut the DNA, then separate and visualize the fragments using electrophoresis to determine their genetic profile of the of their TAS2R38 alleles.
- Teacher guide with background information, step-by-step procedures, questions for critical thinking, and sample answers for teachers
- Hands-on lab that can be completed in three 50-minute class periods
- Store at 4°C; GreenGel™ Cups should be left in the original box and protected from light
- Guaranteed stable for three months with proper storage
Teaching AP Biology? A Taste of Genetics MiniLab and extension activities are three Big Ideas in one comprehensive package. Together, these labs are an in-depth exploration of the TAS2R38 gene, covering hands-on genetic analysis, bioinformatics, population genetics, and evolution.
PCR protocols vary and scientists optimize their protocols to get the most robust results. 2-step PCR is commonly used with primers that require higher annealing temperatures and in real time PCR. We opted for this change due to the uniqueness of the primers we use. By using the same temperature for the annealing and extension steps, this protocol is now a 2-step protocol, resulting in consistent amplification for the Taste of Genetics MiniLab!
Materials Included in each MiniLab:
Each MiniLab contains enough materials for 10 workstations, 2 – 3 students per workstation.
- Ten 2% Agarose GreenGel™ Cups
- One bottle of 100 mL TBE buffer concentrate, enough to make 2L of 1X running buffer
- DNA extraction solution
- Forward and reverse primers for PTC genes
- Taq polymerase master mix (2X)
- HaeIII restriction enzyme
- Restriction enzyme dilution buffer
- MiniOne® Sample Loading Dye (5X)
- MiniOne® Molecular Weight Marker
- One bag of 0.2mL thin-walled PCR tubes
- One bag of 0.65 mL microcentrifuge tubes
- Forty PTC taste strips
- Teacher guide
Additional equipment required:
Centrifuge capable of spinning PCR tubes at a minimum of 8000 RPM, such as the MiniOne Multi-Speed Centrifuge
Use these teachers guides and classroom handouts to get the most out of your A Taste of Genetics MiniLab.
* Teachers, please contact us for password to access this file.