| December 8, 2015

An archeologist friend of yours who is currently digging in an ancient Mesopotamian burial site finds remains of a body of king whom she suspect to have died of leprosy. She is trying to interest you in helping her to prove this, and you decide to see if could find DNA from the causal agent of leprosy, Mycobacterium leprae and amplify DNA samples extracted from the mummified tissue samples by PCR. PCR allows exponential amplification of the amount of DNA, doubling the number of DNA molecules every cycle (1 molecule, 2 molecules, 4, 8, 16, … 2n). Following its electrophoresis in an agarose gel, the amplified DNA can be visualized following its staining with ethidium bromide. The sensitivity of the method is such that you should be able to see about 6*1010 molecules of your DNA fragment which is about a 1000 base-pair long. How many copies of the DNA were there in the original sample if you needed 30 PCR cycles to be able to see the fragment in a gel?

~ 5,000 molecules.

~ 5 molecules.

~ 50,000 molecules

~ 500 molecules.

~ 50 molecules.

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Category: Biology

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