Wheat Germ DNA Extraction

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This laboratory exercise is designed to show learners how DNA can easily be extracted from wheat germ using simple materials. Use this experiment to supplement any unit on genetics and to demonstrate how scientists study DNA. Adult supervision is recommended. This resource guide includes tips and suggestions for instructors as well as other DNA extraction experiments and a chart for learners to answer questions.

Quick Guide

Preparation Time:
5 to 10 minutes

Learning Time:
45 to 60 minutes

Estimated Materials Cost:
$10 - $20 per group of students

Age Range:
Ages 11 - 18

Resource Types:
Activity, Experiment/Lab Activity


Materials List (per group of students)

  • 250 ml beaker
  • baking soda
  • hot plate
  • Adolph's natural meat tenderizer
  • non-roasted wheat germ
  • ice cold 95% ethanol
  • thermometer
  • 15 ml test tube
  • pH meter
  • glass stirring rod
  • Palmolive
  • detergent
  • distilled water
  • test tube rack or 250 ml beaker
  • graduated cylinders (10ml and 100ml)


  • Life Sciences
    • Cells
      • Cell Structure and Function
    • Diversity of Life
      • Plants
    • Heredity and Genetics
      • DNA Structure and Function
  • Physical Sciences
    • Chemistry
  • The Nature of Science
    • The Scientific Process
      • Conducting Investigations

Informal Categories

  • Food and Cooking


To use this activity, learners need to:

  • see
  • read
  • touch

Learning styles supported:

  • Involves hands-on or lab activities


Components that are part of this resource:

This resource is part of:

Access Rights:

  • Free access


  • Hays, Lana