Prior to this lesson, students learned how the cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (COI) gene is used to barcode animals. In this lesson, students learn more about the cytochrome c oxidase protein and its three-dimensional structure. In particular, students learn how to identify the active site in cytochrome c oxidase. Once they can find this site, they look at aligned structures (one of which contains a poison) and then determine the identity of a foreign substance that acts as a poison by binding to the active site. This lesson allows students to explore the use of the molecular visualization program Cn3D to learn more about cytochrome c oxidase, a ubiquitous and important protein. In Lesson Five, students learn how molecular diagnostics researchers might use bioinformatics tools in their career.
Download Genetic Research Lesson 5 (pdf)
NOTE: To download the Cn3D files, right click and save the file to your desktop. Otherwise these files will open as text.