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How to Study DNA Damage Experimentally...

So what do I do? How do I actually do experiments looking at DNA damage or photosynthesis or whatever. Here's a picture of what you would see with the naked eye out in the field. You see a little packets of algae that I've stuck in the pond. What I do is I take little samples and I put them in these little Whirlpack bags, which are maybe two or three inches by, when they're rolled up, two or three inches square. It turns out that they're transparent to UV radiation and to photosynthetically active radiation. I put a sample in. I had to take a core or I slide it in with the unicells like which don't core very nicely. You've got as natural a community as possible. Then, if I'm doing work on photosynthesis, I give them radioactive carbon dioxide in a liquid form. It's in the form of bicarbonate, so I use radioactive bicarbonates. But instead of being baking soda that you would get at the store, it's C-14 baking soda, do not use it for cakes or a cooking sort of thing. But it's chemically the same thing. The 14 is on there so that I can trace it through the reaction. You can't buy blue carbon. You use radiation as a way to trace it. I simply incubate these samples with C-14 bicarbonate and then I should stop the reaction by putting these bags in the dry ice chest so it's dark, they freeze, we bring them back to the lab and then we look for carbon that is now acid stable, that will not go anywhere when you add acid. But as I'm not going to be showing much photosynthesis data, let's go into anymore detail there.


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