Team:Macquarie Australia/Openday


Macquarie University Open Day

The Open Day for Macquarie University was held on the 14th September this year, and every year attracts a wide range of people, from prospective students to families with young children. For this reason we planned a range of activities in the labs for people to look at and also some hands on activities to excites the children but also educational for the parents and future students. For this day, the whole team got involved in planning and participating


Chlorophyll Chromatography

Why do leaves change colour? Through chlorophyll chromatography we answered this question. This hands on activity allowed people to perform a chromatography to observe the different pigments within leaves to show why leaves change colour. Further we also had team members on hand to explain this and provide the link with our project.



Like the chromatograph activity, a photosynthesis display was also set up the show part of the process. This display involved placing seaweed in a sealed test tube full of water, to show photosynthesis in action through the production of bubbles in the tube. Once again this provided a link to our project that was easy to explain to the general public.


Glowing Plates

For the day we set up glowing plates, using fluorescent E. coli made using parts obtained from the registry. These plates provided an exciting and visual display for people to look at to show the simplicity created from the open source nature of synthetic biology.

Transformation protocol link

Plate 1: 17B (BBa_K864100)- Super Yellow Flurescent Protein
              19I (BBa_K592100)- Blue Flurescent Protein

Plate 2: 2B (BBa_J63009)- Red Flurescent Protein- control

Plate 3: 5H (BBa_I13521- Red Flurescent Protein
              5J (BBa_I13522)- Green Flurescent Protein
              20C (BBa_I13600- Cyan Flurescent Protein

Gibson Assembly Puzzle

We also set up a Gibson assembly puzzle along with a DNA model. We had team members present to help explain the process of these techniques and the advantages they provide us.


Magic Milk

However the hit of the day was definitely the magic milk practical, where people were able to added different colour food dye to full cream milk, using micropipettes, the addition of detergent then provided the magic that entertained both the children and adults.


Open Day Brochure (Part 1)
Open Day Brochure (Part 2)