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Hun School Bio Students Conduct Original Molecular Research in Conjunction with Rutgers University
Date:11/1/2013

Princeton, NJ (PRWEB) November 01, 2013

On October 8th, Hun School Advanced Placement Biology students began working on an extended research project with Rutgers University’s Waksman Student Scholars Program. Conducting original genetic research, students will have hands-on experience in isolating, sequencing, and analyzing genes from the species Landoltia punctata. The sequence of these genes has never before been determined.

“This project offers a range of practical opportunities for students. Firstly, students will apply technical scientific procedures and methods toward molecular research; and secondly, students will interpret data at a very high level,” said AP Biology teacher Blair Buck. “The bench work itself, involving cDNA extraction, electrophoresis, and restriction digests will take a few weeks to complete. Learning to analyze the sequences and completing an unknown sequence annotation can take months.

“Recent research has begun to explore the potential of Duckweed as an alternative fuel source. By researching this plant on a molecular level, our understanding of its genetic composition can help to provide a more complete understanding of this organism’s genes and what the genes do.”

Because the Duckweed genes have never been sequenced before, students have the opportunity to provide data that could ultimately be cataloged by the international sequence database and used by the international scientific community.

To prepare students for the analysis of the Duckweed genes, students will practice analyzing the sequences of other known Duckweed genes. “Our students will be supported by the Waksman Scholars Program in order to prepare them for the difficulty of working with a never-before sequenced series of genes,” said
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