Molecular Biology Workshop –  12th April 2017

Workshop by Gonçalo Poças. Blog Post written by Michelle Henstridge

In this week’s lab meeting Gonҫalo gave us a basic introduction into molecular biology with his workshop entitled “DNA techniques for traditional molecular cloning”.

The workshop began with an overview of the history of molecular cloning and introduced several basic concepts, including recombinant DNA, plasmids, restriction enzymes and DNA ligase, for those in the group who were not familiar with molecular biology. Once everyone was up to speed, Gonҫalo took us through the process of cloning an amplified gene product into a vector suitable for insertion into the Drosophila genome.

Steps for molecular cloning:

  1. Amplify DNA sequence of interest and add flanking restriction sites
  2. Digest amplified DNA with appropriate restriction enzymes
  3. Ligate DNA into a vector such as pUAST (for generating transgenic Drosophila)
  4. Transform plasmid into bacteria and amplify
  5. Purify plasmid culture ready for injection into Drosophila embryos

This was a very interactive workshop with lots of fun videos to demonstrate the different steps involved in molecular cloning. Gonҫalo also gave us some great tips for things such as primer design and choosing the right restriction enzyme which are sure to come in handy for our own cloning experiments.

Happy cloning everyone! And stay tuned for further workshops on more specific aspects of molecular biology.