Bat Lab – Day 3 – Did our PCR work?

Fun Fact – While other mammals glide, bats actually fly. In fact, these clever mammals are the only ones capable of true and continued flight.


With the feelings in our stomachs akin to those of a student anxiously awaiting exam results, Olivia and I entered the Bat Lab this morning, apprehensively,  with one question on our minds – Did our PCR work?

In order to find out, we needed to carry out Gel Electrophoresis which is a technique used to separate fragments of DNA based on their size. We needed to prepare a gel that contained wells into which we could load our samples. We then carefully had to prepare our samples ( tiny and very precious) by mixing them with a stain.  Once that was done, we were ready to load our gel into a tank containing a buffer and to load our samples into the wells on the gel.

in Electrophoresis, an electric current is then run across the gel and as DNA is negatively charged, it will migrate towards the positive end of the gel. Smaller fragments will travel faster through the gel than larger ones.

So, without further ado and an abundance of enthusiasm, we launched into our tasks for the morning

Preparing the gel.

Preparing the gel.

Finished product

Finished product



Gel 7 Gel 5Carefully preparing samples. Very aware of how small and precious our samples are so concentrating hard.

E1 Electrophoresis 1Gel Electrophoresis – separating fragments of DNA based on size.

gel into machineBecause the DNA samples were mixed with a stain, they can now be viewed under a UV light.

SUCCESS!!! Our PCR worked

SUCCESS!!! Our PCR worked

We were thrilled to know that our PCR worked and so were ready for our next challenge. We spent the afternoon preparing more samples for PCR. Let’s see how that goes!!! We’ll find out tomorrow. 🙂



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s