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Lab – GEL ELECTROPHORESIS

Virtual Biology Labs – Gel Electrophoresis:


https://www.classzone.com/books/hs/ca/sc/bio_07/virtual_labs/virtualLabs.html

Questions:

1. Explain how comparing DNA fingerprints can help identify a person who has committed a
crime.
DNA fingerprints can help identify a person who has committed a crime if that person has left DNA
material at the scene of the crime. The DNA found at the scene of the crime can be compared to a DNA
sample taken from the suspect and compared to each other. If there is a match in DNA fingerprints, then
we can conclude that the DNA found at the scene of the crime belongs to the suspect.

2. In the table below, record the estimated length in base pairs (bp) of the DNA fragments found in
the samples from the victim, the suspects, and the evidence. Estimate the number of base pairs
by comparing each band to the marker DNA bands.

Band Marker DNA Victim DNA Suspect 1 DNA Suspect 2 DNA Evidence DNA
(bp) (bp) (bp) (bp) (bp)

1. 23,130 2,400 9416 22,900 22,900

2. 9,416 1900 9100 6557 6557

3. 6,557 1700 4200 6200 6200

4. 4,361 2027 2027

5. 2,322

6. 2,027

7.

8.

9.

10.
3. Does the DNA found on the hair match Suspect 1 or Suspect 2?
The DNA found on the hair matches Suspect 2

4. Why do a series of bands appear on the gel?


A series of bands appear on the gel because the DNA negative charge is getting pulled to the positive
charge of the electrophoresis tray, which makes the DNA cross the gel leaving behind tracks.

5. Why is the largest DNA fragment found closest to the well in which it was placed?

The largest DNA fragment is found closest to the well in which it was placed because its large size causes
it to have more difficulty moving through the gel than smaller DNA fragments.

6. What is true of the DNA fragment band closest to the positive end of the gel?
The DNA fragment closest to the positive end of the gel is the smaller fragment. Because they are small,
they are able to move through the gel with ease and travel towards the positive end of the gel.

7. What would happen if the electrodes were plugged into the wrong outlets?
If the electrodes were plugged into the wrong outlets the DNA in the wells will go to the opposite
direction, which will be backwards instead of forwards.