Your Science Zine

How to make glow-in-the-dark or Flourescent Yoghurt


Photoshop Mockup.

Glow in the dark yoghurt is something that has been floating around the DIYbio community for a while now, though to my knowledge no one has actually made a batch. Hopefully that will change now that Cathal Garvey of IndieBiotech has released a “Beginners” guide to hacking yoghurt. As you can see from the excerpt below beginner here is code for you are going to learn alot.

For our project then, we want DNA that resembles the following:

A diagram showing the format of the desired DNAColourised and labelled sections of the DNA, presented with the unnamed section of target DNA. This assumes the simplest scenario where no “cleanup” mechanisms are included to remove the resistance gene.

The promoter (Prom) should be a constantly “on” promoter, termed “constitutive”. The terminator (Term) is a region of DNA that prevents the gene from transcribing beyond its normal context, which could cause unintended interruptions of cellular functions; unhappy bacteria could result, and the gene could end up unstable. The antibiotic should be chosen to avoid medically significant antibiotics such as ampicillin; this is a civic responsibility matter, as otherwise your yoghurt could end up assisting dangerous pathogens in becoming resistant to medicines. Ideally your antibiotics would be self-excising once they become unnecessary, leaving a yoghurt containing only harmless fluorescent proteins and nothing else.