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Media Advisory

For immediate use

Oct. 23, 2006 -- No. 501

East Bend and Jamestown high school students
to get hands-on lesson aboard UNC's science bus

Media representatives are invited to climb aboard Discovery, one of the buses in the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's Destiny science learning program, this week as it travels to high schools in East Bend (Yadkin County) and Jamestown (Guilford County).

Tuesday (Oct. 24)
7:55 a.m. to 9:26 a.m.;
9:47 a.m. to 11:18 a.m.;
1:25 p.m. to 2:50 p.m.
Forbush High School
1525 Falcon Road, East Bend

Two of Gayle Norman's biology classes and one of Billy Sapp's health team relations classes will perform a lab exercise called "Mystery of the Crooked Cell." Students will discover the molecular basis of sickle cell disease by using gel electrophoresis as a diagnostic tool to differentiate normal hemoglobin from hemoglobin found in individuals with sickle cell disease.

Wednesday (Oct. 25)
Noon to 1:30 p.m.;
3:15 p.m. to 4:40 p.m.
Middle College High School at Guilford Technical Community College
601 High Point Road, Jamestown

Two of Stanley Johnson's biology classes will perform a lab exercise called "Case of the Crown Jewels." Students will assume the role of forensic scientists and perform DNA restriction analysis (popularly known as DNA fingerprinting) to analyze drops of "blood" and other kinds of evidence found at crime scenes as they determine which suspects are guilty or innocent.

Thursday (Oct. 26)
Noon to 1:30 p.m.;
1:40 p.m. to 3:10 p.m.;
3:15 p.m. to 4:40 p.m.
Middle College High School at Guilford Technical Community College
601 High Point Road, Jamestown

Students from Faith Johnson's physical science and chemistry classes will perform a lab exercise called "The Crucial Concentration." Students will assume the role of laboratory investigators for a court case to determine the amount of protein found in three sports drinks. Using the general concept of the Lowry Assay and microanalysis skills, students learn how to use a spectrophotometer, measure absorbencies, collect quantitative data, and produce a standard curve to find the protein content in each sample.

The Destiny traveling science learning program is the Morehead Planetarium and Science Center's formal science education initiative serving pre-college teachers and students across North Carolina. The program develops and delivers a standards-based, hands-on curriculum and teacher professional development with a team of educators and a fleet of vehicles that travel throughout the state.

Destiny and Discovery, two custom-built, 40-foot, 33,000-pound buses, bring the latest science and technology equipment to students who otherwise would not see a high-tech laboratory or what a career in science can offer. The modules described above are among 13 offered as part of Destiny's curriculum. All of Destiny's modules are aligned with the N.C. Standard Course of Study. "Mystery of the Crooked Cell" and "The Crucial Concentration" are adapted from Boston University School of Medicine CityLab modules.

The science bus is a powerful visual image that heightens public awareness of the importance of and funding necessary for quality science education. Destiny first hit the road in 2000.

For more information, go to http://www.destiny.unc.edu.

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Destiny science learning contact: Claire Bury, (919) 843-5915 or bury@unc.edu
News Services contact: Kyle York, (919) 962-8415 or kyle_york@unc.edu