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Biophysics enzyme experiments for a second year lab

  1. Dec 13, 2009 #1

    I hope I'm posting this in the right section. I am trying to find some experiments that would be appropriate for an introductory biophysics course for some second year students. Any links/pointers in the right direction would be great, although I'm specifically looking for enzyme/molecular motor experiments. I thought there would be many of these experiments on the web or in books but at this stage I am struggling to find any.

    Thanks in advance for any help
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 13, 2009 #2

    Andy Resnick

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    Here's an idea off the top of my head- one of the first papers on cell locomotion involved cells deposited on Saran Wrap. As the cell created filipodia and began to move, the saran wrap became wrinkled and easily visualized. From this, the author (IIRC) calculated the forces involved for cell locomotion (which involves the actin-myosin system). I could try and locate the paper (it was in Science in the 70's, I think), but you need a lot of equipment to be able to do this: cell culture specifically.

    Actually, that's a better point- what type of laboratory instrumentation do you have access to? What level of wet chem lab sophistication do the students have?

    A simpler experiment could simply be immunostaining for actin or tubulin (or both): some good chem experience, some bio experience, some optics experience.
  4. Dec 13, 2009 #3
    That experiment sounds very cool, thanks for your reply. I'll have a further look into that. I'm not 100% sure on how sophisticated the lab is at this stage, but I assume we will head to the biochem lab to do some of the experiments.
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