DNA fingerprinting is used to determine the probability that genetic material came from a particular individual.
It is used for: Solving crimes, clarifying immigration disputes and to establish paternity or maternity
How does it work?
• A DNA sample is obtained and it cut into fragments using a restriction enzyme
• The resulting solution is applied to a gel
• The DNA fragments are subjected to an electrical field
• The DNA fragments are electrically charged owing to the negative charges carried by the phosphate groups and so the different-sized DNA fragments move at different speeds through the gel towards the positive electrode
• This process is known as electrophoresis
• Each fragment is marked by a probe and exposed on X-ray film
• This produces a pattern of black bars
• Who should have access to personal genetic information?
• Who owns and controls genetic information?
• Who owns genes and other pieces of DNA?
• Should parents have the right to have their children tested?
• Should tests be performed for genetic diseases?
• Should an individual always be given his/her genetic information?
Drafted by Eunice (Chemistry)