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Need Help

Postby kaylaj » Tue Sep 28, 2010 4:44 pm

My science project is Forensic Science:Building Your Own Tool For Identifying DNA. reading the instruction I was confused with placing the electrodes should I put on on top of the gel and one at the bottom of the container in the gel. When I put the food coloring in the wells everything ran together, I use the sytrofoam like the picture and made the five wells, should I only use maybe three of the wells and not all five. Before I ran this again was hoping for your advice. With the running of all the food dyes it was hard to see what the results were suppose to be as I'm uncertain what they are.

Thank you for any help you can give me


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Re: Need Help

Postby agm » Tue Sep 28, 2010 5:58 pm


Welcome to the forum. I'm moving your question to the Life Sciences forum where more experts will see it -- Preparing for the Science Fair is more about displaying and presenting your results.

Here's a link to the project for everyone's reference: http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-f ... p028.shtml


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Re: Need Help

Postby drowningfish » Tue Sep 28, 2010 9:33 pm

Hello Kayla,

I remember when I did gel electrophoresis in biology that it was difficult to drop the DNA samples and food coloring into the gel without ruining the gel or causing everything to run together. It just takes practice and very steady hands. :D

As with the electrodes, the negative electrodes should be at the well side, and the positive on the opposite end. If you are confused with the set up, you should go through this animation: http://learn.genetics.utah.edu/content/labs/gel/. I think it gives a very good presentation of the set-up and of what you should be looking for.

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Re: Need Help

Postby brookeyool2 » Thu Sep 30, 2010 4:51 pm

Hi Kayla,

This is a great experiment! I agree with the previous poster, however, that it is tricky to get the dyes into the wells the first few times you do it.

If the dyes are running together, I'd suggest only loading dye into three of the five wells, and using every other well (1-3-5). This might space things out a bit more. You also may be having trouble with the wells tearing--this is a common problem for experienced people, too! Make sure that when you remove your comb from the gel, it comes out smoothly and doesn't tear the wells. Also, when you load in the dye, make sure you don't poke a hole through the bottom of the well.

Good luck, and have fun with this!

-- Brooke :wink:

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