Classes

Molecular Mozzarella

Have you ever tried making cheese at home?  What about making milk?

We have developed a unique protocol to actually assemble cow's milk from its chemical components.  In this class you will take powdered proteins, salts, and sugars to assemble milk that is almost identical to milk from a cow!  We will then add fats to mimic the fat content of whole milk.  The best part is turning your milk creation into a mozzarella ball you can eat.

So why are we researching milk here at TheLab?  We have an ongoing project to replicate the structure of milk with the goal or replacing the animal derived components with lab produced non animal products.  In the end we will have milk and cheese that is identical to that produced from cows but with no animals involved!

Who: Anyone ready to learn.  Our classes are open to young students to mature adults.

When: Sunday August 5 from 10am-2pm

Where: TheLab, 1927 Zonal Ave, Los Angeles, CA, 90033

Cost: $100 per participant.  All materials included

Instructor: Dr. Cory Tobin has a PhD in biology from Caltech and years of experience with genetic engineering techniques.

Contact Melissa (melissa@thel4b.com) for additional information or if you have any questions.

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STRAWBERRY DNA EXTRACTION

Have you ever wondered how scientists extract DNA from a plant? All living organisms have DNA, the blueprint for everything that happens inside an organism’s cells. DNA tells an organism how to develop and function, and is so important that this complex compound is found in virtually every one of its cells.

We will be studying strawberries because each strawberry cell has eight copies of the genome, giving them a lot of DNA per cell. (Most organisms only have two genome copy per cell.)

In this activity you’ll make your own DNA extraction kit from household chemicals and use it to separate DNA from strawberries. Then we will use a professional DNA extraction process exactly like a research plant biologist would use.

Why two methods you might be asking?

The first method using household products will produce a large quantity of DNA and provide an excellent visual about the DNA of strawberries.  But there are some drawbacks to this method.  During the class we will discuss the pros and cons of different methods and analyze why research scientists select specific protocols.

Who: Anyone ready to learn.  Our classes are open to young students to mature adults.

When: Sunday August 12 from 10am-2pm

Where: TheLab, 1927 Zonal Ave, Los Angeles, CA, 90033

Cost: $100 per participant.  All materials included

Instructor: Dr. Cory Tobin has a PhD in biology from Caltech and years of experience with genetic engineering techniques.

Contact Melissa (melissa@thel4b.com) for additional information or if you have any questions.

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INTRO TO SYNTHETIC BIOLOGY COURSE

Have you ever been interested in biology but never had the chance to do your own research?  Have you wondered how exactly genetic engineering is done in a laboratory?  Join us in this six week (6 Sundays) crash course to synthetic biology where you will get hands on lab experience with genetic engineering. Each day you will learn and practice new skills, working towards the goal of modifying a lab strain of E. coli to produce colorful pigments.

Participants will first learn about computer-aided genetic modelling and design their own DNA assembly.  Then they will dive in to lab work and not only become proficient in basic lab work but learn cutting edge techniques.  Participants will cut and paste DNA using modern genetic engineering methods - the same methods used by academic and industrial scientists around the world.  By the end of the class you will be able to design and execute your own genetic creations.

Some of the specific skills you will master:
- Pipetting
- Precision measuring
- Sterile technique
- Bacterial transformations
- Minipreps
- Gel electrophoresis
- Restriction digests
- Bacteria culturing

No prior lab experience is necessary.  Some basic knowledge of biology would be helpful but will not be assumed.  By the end of the class you will have gained the skill set and confidence to pursue your own synthetic biology research.

Who: Anyone ready to learn.  Our classes are open to young students to mature adults.

When: Sundays from 10am-2pm (This is a 6 week course)

  • Sept 16
  • Sept 23
  • Sept 30
  • Oct 7
  • Oct 14
  • Oct 21

Where: TheLab, 1927 Zonal Ave, Los Angeles, CA, 90033

Cost: $600 per participant.  All materials included

Instructor: Dr. Cory Tobin has a PhD in biology from Caltech and years of experience with genetic engineering techniques.

Contact Melissa (melissa@thel4b.com) for additional information or if you have any questions.

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Personal Genome Class

In this 3 week class you will get into the lab to learn about your own DNA.  After collecting your DNA sample from your mouth you will do a purification.  Then you will use PCR to amplify a selected region of your DNA to allow us to study a taste receptor that detects bitter flavors.  Interestingly this receptor is only turned on in some individuals.

You will also process your sample for DNA sequencing.  In the last day of the class you will analyze your sequencing results using computer programs.  After you understand how DNA sequencing works we will discuss how variations in DNA sequences lead to observable characteristics.  The final portion of this class will focus on learning how to interpret 23andMe data.

-detects bitter flavors.  Interestingly this receptor is only turned on in some individuals.

You will also process your sample for DNA sequencing.  In the last day of the class you will analyze your sequencing results using computer programs.  After you understand how DNA sequencing works we will discuss how variations in DNA sequences lead to observable characteristics.  The final portion of this class will focus on learning how to interpret 23andMe data.

Some of the specific skills you will master:
- Pipetting
- DNA Purification
- Sterile techniques
- PCR
- PCR Purification
- Gel electrophoresis
- DNA Sequencing

No prior lab experience is necessary.  Some basic knowledge of biology would be helpful but will not be assumed.  By the end of the class you will have gained the skill set and confidence to pursue your own synthetic biology research.

Who: Anyone ready to learn.  Our classes are open to young students to mature adults.

When: Sundays from 10am-2pm (This is a 3 week course)

  • Nov. 4
  • Nov. 11
  • Nov. 18

Where: TheLab, 1927 Zonal Ave, Los Angeles, CA, 90033

Cost: $300 per participant.  All materials included

Instructor: Dr. Cory Tobin has a PhD in biology from Caltech and years of experience with genetic engineering techniques.

Contact Melissa (melissa@thel4b.com) for additional information or if you have any questions.

Sign Up Now

PLAN A VISIT 

Are you curious about TheLab?

Want to know what we are doing and if you can get involved?

Schedule an appointment to come visit us.

If you have a personal project you want to begin researching we can help you understand our membership options.  Not sure how to start your own research?  Learn about the classes we offer to beginners.

Students are always welcome in our lab.  We have an ever expanding youth scientist program for middle school and high school students working on science fair projects and personal research.

Who: Anyone curious about TheLab.  (Students under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.)

When:  Please email Melissa at Melissa@THEL4B.com to schedule an appointment.

Where: TheLab, 1927 Zonal Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90033

Cost: FREE