DNA sequencing with the Shadow a Scientist program at UT Austin

Today, I had a great time at UT Austin with their Shadow a Scientist program, part of the College of Natural Science’s Freshman Research Initiative.

It was wonderful seeing Dr. Greg Clark again. I met him at the Barbara Jordan statue on the UT Austin campus, and we had a nice chat. Afterwards, I joined Mr. Peter Enyeart, a graduate genome researcher.

Mr. Enyeart led me through an experiment where we got to see what DNA sequencing is all about. This involved inserting bacteria into an agar substance and running an electric current through it to help the DNA spread out.

Agar is made up of tons of holes. The bigger DNA cannot go through the smaller holes, but the smaller DNA can spread out, and the two patterns create the DNA sequencing for study that we see here:

I enjoyed wearing the lab coat, gloves, and glasses. All I needed was a pocket protector to bring out my inner scientist!

I like lab coats! I also wear one as part of my costume in last year’s “The Boy who Cried Invasives” video, part of my Battles with Invasive Species video series:

If you haven’t had the chance to sign up for the Shadow a Scientist program, there’s still time to register, or if you’re a future middle schooler, don’t miss signing up for this program next year.

Thanks Dr. Clark and Mr. Enyeart. I had a spectacular time!

Your friend,
Ben

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Filed under Battles with Invasive Species, College of Natural Sciences, DNA sequencing, Dr. Gregory Clark, Freshman Research Initiative, genome, Mr. Peter Enyeart, Shadow a Scientist, University of Texas, UT Austin

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