Lesson Five: Protein Structure and Function—A Molecular Murder Mystery

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)

Download Genetic Research Lesson 5 Powerpoint (ppt)

NOTE:  To download the Cn3D files, right click and save the file to your desktop.  Otherwise these files will open as text.

Resource files: 
AttachmentSize
Binary Data Cytochrome_c_Oxidase_1OCC.cn31.44 MB
Binary Data Carol_Olds.cn32.85 MB
Binary Data Carl_North.cn315.9 MB

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