Techniques utilized in molecular genetics

Published on February 2, 2011   26 min

A selection of talks on Genetics & Epigenetics

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Hello and welcome to this Henry Stewart Talk on "Techniques Utilized in Molecular Genetics". My name is Cecil Lewis. I'm an anthropologist at the University of Oklahoma, and my research specializes in anthropological genetics. I focused on questions related to the peopling of the world, as well as the role of natural selection in the human genome. I've also done some recent research on human microbiomes. These are the collective genomes of a bacterial ecology located on a human such as the microbiome located in saliva, or in feces.
There are wide range of techniques utilized in molecular genetics. In this talk, I've grouped them under three general themes. One is genetic material separation. This includes techniques such as DNA isolation, and mRNA isolation, library formation, and cell cultures. Second is DNA amplification. This is making multiple copies of a particular genetic locus that you might be interested in. This is done by methods such as PCR and molecular cloning. Finally, I get at allele characterization. Allele characterization is where we're actually trying to determine what is the variation observed at the molecular genetic level? Number of techniques used include gel electrophoresis, probe hybridization, Real-Time PCR, and DNA sequencing. But we'll get to these soon.
So the first theme that I would like to discuss is genetic material separation and as the name implies, this is getting genetic material such as DNA or mRNA, and taking it outside of the cell that they're harbored in, and also storing them in such a way potentially, in a library, or in a cell culture.