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Molecular Basis of Heredity: Part 4. Gene Identification and Tests

Author(s): Raye L. Alford, PhD

Molecular Methods of Gene Identification and Manipulation, and Diagnostic Testing

In this slide set, we will explore some of the more common molecular genetic laboratory methods for the identification of disease genes, the manipulation of genetic material, and the molecular genetic diagnosis of heritable disorders. The methods to be discussed include linkage analysis, PCR, cloning, restriction analysis, allele specific oligonucleotide hybridization and DNA sequencing.

The image on this slide is a photograph of the model of the DNA molecule that was built by Drs. James Watson and Francis Crick in 1953. Drs. Watson and Crick used this model to depict their proposed structure for the DNA double helix. The proposed structure was derived from X-ray diffraction data produced by Drs. Maurice Wilkins and Rosalind Franklin. The model was constructed from metal scraps obtained from a machine shop.

Drs. Watson and Crick published their proposed DNA structure in the journal Nature on April 2, 1953 (Volume 171, page 737). Drs. Watson, Crick and Wilkins were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 1962 for their work. Dr. Franklin died before 1962. Since Nobel Prizes are only awarded to living individuals, she could not be honored.