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BioCoach Contents
Restriction Enzyme Digestion of DNA
Concept 1: The DNA Helix
   Review (4 pages)
Concept 3: Analysis of DNA by Gel Electrophoresis
   Practice (1 page)
   Review (10 pages)
Restriction Enzyme Digestion of DNA
Restriction enzymes are enzymes isolated from bacteria that recognize specific sequences in DNA and then cut the DNA to produce fragments, called restriction fragments. Restriction enzymes play a very important role in the construction of recombinant DNA molecules, as is done in gene cloning experiments. Another application of restriction enzymes is to map the locations of restriction sites in DNA.

You should have an understanding of DNA structure and the principles and steps involved in constructing and analyzing recombinant DNA molecules, as presented in lectures and in your textbook. This activity is designed to enhance your understanding and retention by illustrating DNA structure, restriction enzyme digestion of DNA, analysis of digested DNA by agarose gel electrophoresis, and the principles involved in constructing a restriction map from primary data. A 15-question multiple-choice quiz allows you to test your understanding of the material. An additional three questions test your ability to construct restriction maps from DNA fragment size data. The correct restriction maps may be viewed on-screen.

All sections of the BioCoach except for DNA structure are enhanced by animations to provide a more dynamic presentation of the concepts. The restriction mapping section includes an interactive Shockwave animation in which you can measure the migration distance of a DNA fragment after gel electrophoresis and see how that distance gives its molecular size from a calibration curve.

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