MadSci Network: Genetics

Re: How can I clone a plant and identify that their DNA is identical?

Date: Tue Feb 18 03:45:27 2003
Posted By: Jeremy Cherfas, Staff, Public Awareness, IPGRI (International Plant Genetic Resources Institute)
Area of science: Genetics
ID: 1045521783.Ge

Dear Francine

Don't be worried about this, all your teacher wants you to do is to make 
cuttings of the African Violet. They are clones because they are 
genetically identical to the original parent plant. You can find pretty 
good instructions, and some more information about African Violets at this 
site and there are lots of others that a search on the web will find.

To prove that the DNA is identical is a little more 
difficult and requires access to a laboratory and some pretty expensive 
equipment. I don't know whether you are expected actually to do this 
yourself. I found some information about kits available for schools here and there's an 
indication of how you would use restriction enzymes to examine the DNA of 
parent and clones (DNA fingerprinting - Admin note) here.

I hope that helps


Admin note:  You can prove that the clone is identical to the parent using DNA 
fingerprinting. This involves extracting the DNA from both plants, and cutting 
it with an enzyme that produces a different pattern of cutting (fingerprint)in 
different DNA sequences. If the pattern of cutting is exactly the same, then 
its likely that the two individuals are the same. 
More about DNA fingerprinting:
How does DNA fingerprinting work...?
Good luck!

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