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Chapter 14 : Recombinant DNA

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Recombinant DNA, Page 1 of 2

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Abstract:

The student activity recombinant paper plasmids introduces some basic recombinant DNA techniques to students. Paper models are used to demonstrate how plasmid DNA is cut with restriction enzymes and recombined to create a recombinant DNA molecule. “Recombinant” DNA is simply a DNA molecule that has been assembled from pieces taken from more than one source of DNA. Making recombinant DNA became possible with the discovery of restriction enzymes and DNA ligase. Restriction enzymes are used to cut DNA into reproducible fragments, and ligase is used to form new phosphodiester bonds between them. When phosphodiester bonds are formed between DNA pieces from different sources, a recombinant DNA molecule is created. The most important application of recombinant DNA technology is gene cloning. Plasmids are (relatively) small circular DNA molecules found in many bacteria and some yeasts. After transformation by plasmids containing antibiotic resistance genes, bacteria that acquired the plasmid (transformants) can be detected by plating the bacteria on media containing the antibiotic(s). To determine whether a given transformant contains the desired recombinant plasmid, the scientist often must prepare plasmid DNA from that transformant. In this activity chapter, students assemble plasmids carrying genes for ampicillin and kanamycin resistance.

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2008. Recombinant DNA, p 244-250. In Molecular Biology and Biotechnology: A Guide for Teachers, Third Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816100.ch14

Key Concept Ranking

DNA Restriction Enzymes
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Diagram of the paper plasmids and their restriction products.

Citation: Kreuzer H, Massey A. 2008. Recombinant DNA, p 244-250. In Molecular Biology and Biotechnology: A Guide for Teachers, Third Edition. ASM Press, Washington, DC. doi: 10.1128/9781555816100.ch14
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