Experts from the Gene Technology Access Centre (GTAC) in Melbourne will be running a number of specialist biology workshops at the Centre. Students from other schools in the region are welcome to register to attend.
Transformation of bacteria with the Green Fluorescent Protein will be available for Year 12 Biology students.
Introducing foreign genes into bacteria for the production of novel proteins is a cornerstone of biotechnology. This workshop is concerned with inserting the Green Fluorescent Protein (GFP) into the bacterium, Escherichia coli. Students use research grade technologies to perform a restriction digestion and gel electrophoresis to assess if the GFP gene is inserted into the plasmid. They then perform a bacterial transformation with the recombinant plasmid and plate the transformed E. coli cells onto selective media. Students view results to determine the success of the transformation.
Biotechnology and HPV will be available for Year 10 and 11 Biology students.
Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is the chief cause of cervical cancer. Although there are over 100 different types of HPV, many of which are harmless, just two strains are responsible for most cervical cancers. It is therefore a major imperative to identify HPV types for screening women at risk and for facilitating medical research. In this workshop, students use restriction digestion and gel electrophoresis to distinguish between different types of HPV in samples from three patients with ambiguous pap smear results. Students use the results to determine if any of the patients are at risk of developing cervical cancer from the most virulent type: HPV16.