It only takes a couple of minutes, and after you've isolated your own DNA, you can either drink it back down in a tasty "DNA shot" (great party trick) or better yet, purify it further for more analysis*.
Materials & Set Up
- 1/4 of a shot glass full of your saliva
- several drops of dish soap (look for sodium laurel sulfate in the ingredients)
- a pinch of table salt (1/16 of a teaspoon)
- some contact-lens cleaning solution, meat tenderizer, or pineapple juice (optional)
- Ice-cold 120-proof+ liquor (overproof rum works well)
The chemicals used in this experiment are "everyday" household items and are not particularly dangerous. Nonetheless, exercise extra caution and think twice if you decide to consume your DNA shot and ABSOLUTELY do not substitue rubbing alcohol, isopropyl alcohol, or any other non-consumable alcohol for the overproof rum we used. Besides using "denatured' alcohol, the other potential safety concern is the dishsoap added to the mixture. A couple drops won't hurt you, but if you are concerned about it, feel free to leave it out.
This instructable was produced by DIYbio - an organization for amateur biotechnologists. Visit diybio.org for more information.
EDIT: Some DIYbioers are developing a simple gel box and a gel box on steroids. We should have some instructables put together for them before Dec 08. If you are interested in helping, please join the DIYbio google group!