Additional simple applications
I'm a neuroscientist/molecular biologist by training, so I've done plenty of gels. I think this project is really cool, but I'm trying to think up other applications that would only require materials easily available to the layperson (ie not ethidium bromide).
I remember in undergrad I did a thin-layer chromotography with plant pigments extracted from spinach. Of course, trying to get chlorophyll or caratinoids out of leaf tissue wouldn't be good for this application since it would require nasty organic solvents, but according to Wikipedia, the anthocyans are water-soluable. It could be fun DIY project to seperate out pigments from extracts of different flowers and fruits using the drinking straw gels. Would this idea work? What would be the best method for getting an extract? Maybe grind the flowers with a few drops of ethanol? Seth V. Jones 18:27, 4 June 2009 (EDT)