Molecular Biology by BioHubIL

Participants use state of the art laboratory techniques to extract, manipulate and test their own DNA.

Target group


Beneficiaries: non scientists who are curious about science. all ages and professions are welcome.

The age range of the beneficiaries:

    12-17 years old, 18-24 years old, 25-34 years old, 45-54 years old, 55-64 years old, 65-74 years old, 75 years or older

Impact achieved

a. Building dialogue between research and society

b. Co-creation of new knowledge

c. Creating positive impact in society

d. Empower citizens to contribute by expressing their real needs and problem

e. Another

Number of beneficiaries who have learnt the method through the project: >120

Measurement tool: I did not.

This is a Scie-Citizen Smart Practice

This project links society and science because “In my workshop, participants perform a genetic test on themselves. This allows them to learn about genetics from a first-person perspective and understand how the power of this science is relevant for them. In every workshop, we have lengthy discussions about relevant scientific topics. Genetic engineering and designer babies are a few examples.
We also learn about the scientific method and how to differentiate opinions from scientific results obtained from experiments. A critical assessment of Scientific and pseudoscientific materials is also touched upon.”

Participants are involved in applying the method in their community/peer group since “After every workshop, I create a WhatsApp group for the participants where relevant content is constantly shared and discussed by the participants (and moderated by me). The groups proved to be a great success and are very active.”

Achieved potential to fullfill Scie-Citizen project smart practice:

Technical table:

First time the method has been appliedApril, 2017
Times the method has been iteratedFrom 5 to 10 times
Duration of the implementation process for each application of the method2-3 5 hour sessions
Geographical coverage of the method: What’s the context you can apply the method?International
Is there any other organisation applying or adapting the method?Yes
Can you describe shortly how other organisations might adapt or have already adapted the method?The workshop can be preformed anywhere by an individual adept in molecular biology.
In which sectors is this method applicable?Private sector
What are the goals you achieve with the method?Teach non scientists how about the scientific method, critical thinking and genetics. All by using hands on learning.
How many scientists/researchers you need to perform the method? What is their role?Myself and a helper to run the wet lab part of the workshop.
How many non-scientists/researchers you need to perform the method? What is their role?2 scientists and 20-30 participants (non- scientists).
How long has it take to have first results/ effects noticeable?participants get results at the end of the workshop.
How would you define the process of your project?Co–creation: The workshop involves theoretical and wet lab sessions. First, we learn about the theory of genetics by performing a small experiment. Participants try at tasting a PTC taste strip and discuss why some of them can taste the substance while others cant. We then proceed to a lecture explaining DNA and basic concepts in genetics and molecular biology. I try to keep the lectures interactive by using Real Trivia tools (i.e. kahoot) and initiating discussion frequently. Later we proceed to the wet lab sessions where participants extract their own DNA, manipulate it and perform a genetic test on themselves. The results represent the genetic basis underlying the ability of participants to either taste or not to taste PTC (the first session tasting challenge). The results of the molecular test are then compared and discussed. All the while participants are encouraged to ask questions and discuss with other participants.
How does the documentation of the results look like?We don’t document any results due to the possible sensitivity of the information (genetic data). Biological samples are destroyed after the workshop.
What makes your project innovative?I use a portable molecular biology lab to let non-scientists learn genetics by testing their own DNA. This can be done anywhere in the world.
How have you promoted/do you promote your project?Facebook adds, talks, conventions appearances and word of mouth.
What are the strengths of your project?It is mobile (can be done anywhere), takes little time (two 5 hour sessions) and lets participants experience state of the art molecular biology techniques.
What are the weaknesses of your project?The workshop is suitable for a maximum of 30 participants at a time so that scale can be a problem.
What are the opportunities you can see for your project?I would like to collaborate with various organizations to bring science communication to various places on the planet.
What are the threats you can see for your project?I can’t see any threats.
Tell us a success story/anecdote related to your projectIn my last workshop, I had five founders of tech companies who liked the workshop and took it to invite me to deliver it for their employees.

Suggestion, recommendation, feedback?

Thank you for the opportunity 🙂