• Question: have you ever mutated DNA

    Asked by liam5tephenson on 12 Jun 2019.
    • Photo: David Wilson

      David Wilson answered on 12 Jun 2019:

      Yes, I do this quite a lot in the cells I work with.
      Have you ever wondered what would happen if your cells didn’t make any collagen, remove the gene that makes it and you can find out!
      What about putting a gene into a cell, maybe I want to see where a protein is in a cell. I can add in some DNA that sticks a fluorescent protein on the end of the protein i’m interested (like a flag or lightbulb) in and see what it does.

    • Photo: Rebecca Moon

      Rebecca Moon answered on 12 Jun 2019:

      I don’t work with DNA so directly, no I haven’t. But we all contain DNA in every cell of our body. DNA in our skin can be mutated by the action of sunlight on it, so chances are that most of us have caused mutations in our DNA by too much sun exposure at some point in our lives.

    • Photo: Kaitlin Wade

      Kaitlin Wade answered on 12 Jun 2019:

      Not knowingly.

    • Photo: Marianne King

      Marianne King answered on 13 Jun 2019:

      I haven’t! Unless in my own cells without my knowledge because I got sunburnt once or breathed in too much of Birmingham’s air pollution.

    • Photo: Matthew Bareford

      Matthew Bareford answered on 13 Jun 2019:

      Our DNA mutates in our cells all the time!! the difference is that quite often this DNA will not work/not be further replicated and occaisionally it is.

      But directly wanting too, I have edited DNA so that it will express specific proteins in cells

    • Photo: Nina Rzechorzek

      Nina Rzechorzek answered on 14 Jun 2019:

      In the lab I have used viruses to ‘program’ the DNA of cells to reduce or increase the amount of a particular protein they make, or to make them produce a synthetic protein that produces a light signal every time the cellular clockwork ticks!