|How PARC works...
5. Next step: playing gene detective
At this point, we know that some strains of mice are more affected by alcohol than others, and we have ideas for where in the brain alcohol may be having its effects. Next, we want to ask the question: Are the mice that are more affected by alcohol different genetically from the mice that are less affected? Can we locate any genes that might explain the differences?
To look at genes, we first need to extract the mice's genetic material. We do that by taking a a small tissue sample and using a centrifuge (like the laboratory technicians in the photo are doing) to separate out genetic material to be tested.