Exploring DNA in biochemistry lab courses: DNA barcoding and phylogenetic analysis
DNA structure has been leveraged in a variety of facets that allow scientists to perform a range of assays, including ones for identification of species, establishing evolutionary relationships between taxa, or even identifying individuals. Here, we present a DNA barcoding method as practical, hands-on approach that connects several experimental techniques in one sequence to teach the principles behind DNA isolation, purification, PCR, sequencing, and phylogeny analysis. Our set of exercises is designed for a teaching university laboratory setting. The three laboratory class assignments utilize DNA from a mushroom (can be purchased at a supermarket) and provide a pipeline to guide students through the process of identifying an unknown sample, like in many research laboratories. The third assignment can be used as a stand-alone exercise on phylogeny analysis and can be taught remotely. Students explore the theory behind the standard molecular techniques and apply it in a hands-on setting that involves experimental design, sample preparation, and use of hallmark molecular instruments.
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Education
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Suárez Casanova, Víctor Manuel and Shumskaya, Maria, "Exploring DNA in biochemistry lab courses: DNA barcoding and phylogenetic analysis" (2021). Kean Publications. 914.