PCR: Alu Insert on Locus PV92 

The human genome contains small, repetitive DNA elements or sequences that have been randomly inserted into our genome over millions of years.  This lab focuses on one of those elements called "Alu sequence".  

PCR: Alu Insertion on PV92 Chromosome 16

Students will take their own cheek cells, to extract their own DNA and run gel electrophoresis to compare their Alu insertions to their peers.  This lab uses a large amount of biotechnology methods, great for lab based learning.  

Research Questions

  • What is the genotype for the PV92 Alu insertion on chromosome 16 of the samples in your team?
  • What is the frequency of the PV92 element in the class?

Students will:

  • Collect a cheek sample for DNA extraction with InstaGene Matrix
  • Set up a PCR Reaction using a Thermal Cycler
  • Perform Gel Electrophoresis
  • Determine the genotype of DNA samples
  • Calculate the freqeuncy of PV92 Alu sequence

Lab skills learned:

  • DNA Extraction
  • PCR Reactions
  • Agarose Gel Electrophoresis
  • Calculate allele frequency

PCR Content Block List

PCR Lab Manual

PCR Teacher Guides

PCR Instructional Power Point

Timeline of PCR Activities

PCR Student Materials

PCR Video Resources