My role in the lab is sample preparation. Sample preparation is an important aspect of molecular biology. Whether the sample of interest is extracted from a natural source or cloned into an expression vector, sample preparation usually starts with the development of a purification protocol. Biotechnology such as polyhistidine and GST tags can be added to cloned DNA sequences to create fusion proteins. Fusion tags can be cleaved off using proteases with specific recognition sequences, or else retained in the final sample to create proteins capable of adhering to desired surfaces. Fusion proteins can be purified by affinity chromatography or based on their molecular weight, solubility, or overall charge. Purified samples can be further evaluated and combined with other samples to study protein interactions. An example of a purification scheme is as follows:

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