Insertion Events Integrating Bioinformatics Activities Into Existing Biology Courses
General Biology I (Cell Biology and Genetics) • Biological Molecules • Have students find a gene and its protein. • Cell Structure • Have students find the genes needed to create a cellular structure. • Enzymes • Have students find the genes for a specific pathway.
General Biology II(Evolution, Diversity, Ecology) • Improve existing hemoglobin activity • Add computer tree building and structural comparisons • Current lab: Use SDS-PAGE to analyze fish protein similarity and create a cladogram. • Use bioinformatics to support/refute cladogram using molecular data for various muscle proteins. • Add semester-long environmental sampling project?
Foundations of Biotechnology • Primary focus of lab component is to isolate, clone, over-express and purify a microbial amylase. • “Searching for Amylase” in Microbes Count! • Introduces students to Biology Workbench and the use of various analysis tools (Ndjinn, BLAST, CLUSTALW, ConSurf?) • Generates many important questions • What function(s) does this enzyme serve? • Would some amylases make better industrial enzymes than others? Why? • Etc.!
Honors Independent Study • Write a “contract” outlining an annotation activity.