GO GIRL (Genomic Opportunities for Girls In Research Labs) is an educational outreach program designed to provide a unique opportunity for young women interested in gaining hands-on laboratory experience in molecular biology and genomics. This four-day summer program is a joint effort between The Bernard J. Dunn School of Pharmacy, The George Washington University, Loudoun County Public Schools, and is funded by a grant to LCPS from Howard Hughes Medical Institute.
The 2015 program will be held at the GW Virginia Science and Technology Campus in Ashburn, Virginia June 23–26 (Tuesday – Friday), from 9:30 am – 3:30 pm and is open to rising 10th, 11th, and 12th grade young women from Loudoun County Public Schools.
GLOW- IN-THE-DARK BACTERIA!
Nobel Prize winner Dr. Roger Tsien (HHMI Investigator, University of California, San Diego) is world renowned for creating the "dazzling hues" of fluorescent proteins used to explore the inner workings of cells. Students will have the opportunity to experiment with bacteria and these same proteins while exploring gene expression and genetic modification of organisms. Fluorescent proteins provided by Biobridge (Dr. Roger Tsien, PhD.; program founder).
Artwork made with genetically transformed bacteria
SCIENTIFIC REASON FOR HATING BRUSSEL SPROUTS!
Why do some people love foods like broccoli and cabbage, while others hate these same foods? These vegetables, along with their relatives cauliflower and brussel sprouts, contain varying amounts of the bitter compound phenylthiocarbamide (PTC). Students will learn about genes and genetic fingerprinting and expand on this knowledge to explore the association between their ability to taste PTC and their genetic make-up.
An agarose gel showing different genotypes for tasting the bitter compound PTC.
ADVANCED TECHNIQUES IN MOLECULAR BIOLOGY!
In the course of the lab exercises, students will get to practice techniques commonly used in advanced research labs such as DNA extraction, Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR), agarose gel electrophoresis, Sodium Dodecyl Sulfate Polyacrylamide Gel Electrophoresis (SDS-PAGE), and DNA probing and sequencing.
Students learn how to load an SDS-PAGE gel to look at their glowing proteins
LUNCH AND LEARN!
Lunch time will be an opportunity to meet with women in the health sciences who welcome the opportunity to engage the students in discussions about their careers and what it's really like to be a female in that profession. Lunch and learn contributors have included a pharmacist, physician, registered nurse, physician assistant and genetic counselor.
Students learn how to use micropipettes to measure out volumes of less than one milliliter (1 ml = 0.03 ounces).
NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY!
No previous biological lab experience? No problem! All necessary background knowledge, theory, and laboratory safety training will be provided.
Note: In order to make the GO GIRL program available to as many young women as possible, students whom have previously attended GO GIRL are not eligible for the program again.