Teach PCR and real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) with these hands-on lab activities that engage students with real-world contexts. Students will amplify and analyze DNA from forensic (simulated), human, agricultural, and environmental samples to explore the utility of PCR and qPCR in crime scene investigation, medicine, food analysis, and ecology, among other applications.
Students incorporate PCR, DNA sequencing, and bioinformatics as they genetically identify species of fish, mammals, insects, or fungi using a DNA barcode.
Students use pre-made DNA samples to simulate DNA profiling as commonly used in forensic laboratories.
Students extract DNA from their cheek cells or hair follicles and then use PCR and electrophoresis to fingerprint their own DNA.
Students extract DNA from food samples and then apply PCR and DNA electrophoresis to test for the presence of two GMO-associated DNA sequences.
Real-Time PCR Kits
This activity uses the primers and pre-made DNA samples in the Crime Scene Investigator PCR Basics Kit to teach students the fundamentals of real-time PCR.
An extension of the GMO Investigator Kit, this activity teaches students the fundamentals of real-time PCR and its application in testing foods for the presence and amount of genetic modification.
The steps of PCR are best visualized through animation.
Real-Time PCR Equipment
Looking for PCR or real-time PCR products for your research? See Bio-Rad's products for Life Science Research.