The Transformation Of E. Coli

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Jack Dildabanian
Ms. Buckley

The Transformation of E. coli using the plasmid GFP

Purpose: The purpose of this lab is to observe bacterial growth under various conditions including the transformation of bacteria; to understand how the process of transformation occurs.

Background Information: Transformation is the “process by which the genetic material carried by an individual cell is altered by the incorporation of foreign (exogenous) DNA into its genome” (, “Definition of Genetic transformation”). Transformation in bacterial cells occurs when the cell incorporates DNA into its genetic material. Bacteria cells that have the ability to take up DNA are called “competent.” In a lab setting, this is encouraged by placing the mixtures of transformation solution and plasmid DNA on ice, then rapidly transferring them to a hot water bath for about fifty seconds, and then placing them back on ice again. This procedure is called heat shock and increases the permeability of the cell membrane to DNA. The agent which the new genetic material is incorporated into is the bacterial plasmid. A plasmid is a circular deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) molecule that replicates independently of the bacterial chromosome and often permits a bacteria to gain resistance to an antibiotic. Recombinant plasmids are those which have DNA from two or more sources incorporated into a single plasmid. To make recombinant plasmids, two different plasmids are cut with the same

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