Prototype polymerase chain reaction (PCR), Europe, 1980-1989
The nickname of this machine is ‘Baby Blue’. The Baby Blue prototype was devised in 1986 to replicate DNA from a tiny sample. Samples would be used to study HIV and genetics. The double helix structure was separated by heating each strand. A mating strand was then created with the help of a special enzyme which can stand high temperatures, forming new double helixes. This process was repeated 25-35 times. This is the first model which combines the software controlling the process with the heating and cooling block in one machine.
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DNA stores the information, or blueprints, of every cell and is located in the genes. It is made up of two strands which form a double helix that is linked by hydrogen bonds. It was first described in 1953 by Francis Crick and James Watson.
Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is a virus that weakens vital cells in the immune system, and leads to AIDS. There are two strands: HIV-1, which leads to immunity suppression; and HIV-2, which is not as potent and is only common in West Africa. HIV is spread through direct contact with bodily fluids.
The development of artificial replacement limbs, organs and tissues. It also refers to the use of plants in controlling erosion and in landscape restoration.
Glossary: prototype - object genre
Original form of an object, which is used as an example. Whenever a new design for a building or machine is being developed, a prototype will be made. The prototype is often a smaller version of the final product.