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purple hair
Start with a tissue sample.

Place it in a salt buffer -- a saline solution made from purified water and non-iodized table salt. Add a little bit of meat tenderizer (it's a protease) and some shampoo (contains sodium dodecyl sulfate; you want about a 1% solution of this, but you'd have to determine that empirically) and allow to sit at room temperature until it turns into a slurry of formerly tissue, now digested goo.

Place this in a centrifuge -- a salad spinner should work nicely -- until you've separated out the solids from the liquids. Decant the liquid into a separate container. Add a concentrated salt solution so that the final molarity of sodium is ~1M. (You need a high ionic concentration.) Add isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol, about 1.5-2x the volume of the existing solution.

You will see a white stringy precipitate. This is DNA.

I love my job.

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( 20 comments — Leave a comment )
karine
Dec. 16th, 2003 10:43 am (UTC)
*sits there, mouth agape, and then just says* Cool.

- Karine
shingkhor
Dec. 16th, 2003 11:26 am (UTC)
that is spiffy.
maddycat
Dec. 16th, 2003 11:57 am (UTC)
MY GOD.
I LOVE YOUR JOB TOO.
wintersweet
Dec. 16th, 2003 12:55 pm (UTC)
Dayum.
kwsapphire
Dec. 16th, 2003 01:09 pm (UTC)
THAT ... is SO cool. :D
wabi
Dec. 16th, 2003 02:18 pm (UTC)
I remember doing an experiment like this in the lab once when I was an undergrad (no salad spinner, though). The fact that you can actually see precipitated DNA strands is amazing.
maradydd
Dec. 16th, 2003 02:31 pm (UTC)
My boss also suggested that a washing machine on the spin cycle might work. The main thing is you just have to be able to accelerate the liquid to a couple of G's in order to separate out the solid bits.
mycroftxxx
Dec. 16th, 2003 05:54 pm (UTC)
Trough Fee Secks!
maradydd
Dec. 16th, 2003 06:56 pm (UTC)
To be fair, I owe this one to Andy. The salad spinner was my idea though.
mycroftxxx
Dec. 17th, 2003 05:10 pm (UTC)
It's a damn sight better than anything I would have come up with. I was thinking of a seperate instruction set to convert a blender into an easily-balanced centrifuge.
(Anonymous)
Dec. 16th, 2003 09:31 pm (UTC)
shoooo... O_O
I am absolutely going to try that sometime!
(I wish those "rainy-day craft ideas" books I had when I was little had had something like *that* in them!)
sclerotic_rings
Dec. 17th, 2003 11:03 pm (UTC)
Head out to your nearest Discovery Channel Store and take a look at the new exclusive DNA Lab. Not only did I wish that these were available when I was ten, but I've sworn that I'm getting one for my niece for her upcoming birthday. After all, why stop at extracting onion DNA when she can go mad with any number of other sources, including family members and friends?
maradydd
Dec. 18th, 2003 12:11 pm (UTC)
The DNA Lab was a big hit at the office too.
slithytove
Dec. 16th, 2003 11:01 pm (UTC)
Then find someone with an upper respiratory infection, and have them cough into it (to provide a viral transfective vector).

Then inject it into the dog, and let the fun begin!

never has this icon been more appropriate.
maradydd
Dec. 16th, 2003 11:18 pm (UTC)
Ahahahahahahahahaaaaa!
(Anonymous)
Dec. 17th, 2003 03:13 pm (UTC)
This is Bob the Wonder Geek. I did something like this in high school. We used pieces of onion, evidentally their DNA is easy to get out.
eleuthera4004
Mar. 2nd, 2005 11:46 pm (UTC)
We used peas and E coli. Last week! I'm now doing research for the lab report...
(Anonymous)
Jan. 8th, 2009 11:21 pm (UTC)
:3
This isn't actually DNA purification, it's extraction from a subject.
The act of purifying the DNA means that you need to make sure it is free of any particles, and is generally used if you're taking your extracted DNA to the next level. Meaning, you're readying it for PCR.
All this does is isolate the DNA strands from the tissue sample, so one can see it with the naked eye.
Just telling you.
richsmithj
Jan. 31st, 2010 12:14 pm (UTC)
I too love the job done by you
This is a really great. These tips are just awesome and helpful for all Testing for DNA, like me. Thanks for sharing your knowledge with all of us here.
elianamicra
Sep. 20th, 2010 12:26 pm (UTC)
I think this is the simplest method to check the water purity; using only household appliances you could determinate if there is any bacterial impurities in your tap water.
Whirlpool Parts
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