AP Biology Students Transform E. Coli Cells

Mr. Cardella's AP Biology students genetically transformed E. coli bacterial cells in the lab. How did they do it? He explains, "We isolated a gene that is normally in sea jellies, which allows them to glow green when they absorb UV light. We inserted a plasmid with this particular gene (known as “pGLO”) into the bacterial plates along with the appropriate transcription factor (a unique sugar called “arabinose”) and the bacteria were successfully transformed so that they also glow green with UV exposure! The plasmid also allowed them to be resistant to the antibiotic ampicillin. Don’t worry though, this lab is completely safe for students to do. Safe…and fun!"