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20th Nov 2018

PCR Session at Middlesex University

A group of Enfield 6th form students were given the valuable opportunity by Middlesex University to learn about the principles underlying the use of Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) in a fun and interactive way. 

Polymerase chain reaction is a method widely used in molecular biology to make multiple copies of a specific DNA segment.  In the computer simulation students were thrown right into a crime scene where a murder had taken place. They learnt about the theory behind PCR and were able to apply their newly acquired knowledge to a virtual scenario. 

In the afternoon students attended a wet laboratory and used PCR as a diagnostic test of Sickle cell anemia.  Here students were able to work with real DNA from patients. DNA samples were run on agarose gel; DNA was stained and visualized using UV light.  Finally, the DNA pattern was used to identify individuals with Sickle cell mutation.

What students said: “This trip has been interesting but also fun and has taught us about PCR and genetic screening.  Topics which both come up in the A2 section of the Biology A-Level course”.  Saneaah and Stephanie (13.5)

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