Friday, April 22, 2011

Gel Electrophoresis

So what exactly is this gel electrophoresis thing anyway? Well being that DNA molecules are so small that you can't see them in most microscopes, in order for people to see what DNa actually looks like, they came up with this amazing thing called gel electrophoresis. Most scientiest use this for sorting DNA strands by length. The gel is a sponge like thing made of Jell-O that has many small holes in it. The electrphoresis is how the DNA is pushed through the gel filter. The electric current makes the DNA move. Small strands tend to move faster, and the longer they go the further they get from the starting point. Longer ones obviously tend to move slower. Strands that are the same size sometimes stick together. To make the DNA visible to the human eyes, they must be stained. Even with them being stained, we still can't see single strands of DNA, only larger groups.

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