Yeast Engineer-it Kit™: Genetically Engineer Yeast with Pink DNA - Metabolic Selection

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About the Yeast Engineer-it Kit™

Full STEAM ahead with the Yeast Engineer-it Kit - Metabolic Selection. Engineer yeast with DNA using metabolic selection to create a pink pigment!

This kit contains all ingredients needed to grow and engineer yeast with DNA to create pink fluorescent pigment. 

Learn genetic engineering hands-on using a Yeast Engineer-it Kit. At the end of this life science project, you'll have grown and engineered yeast to produce something for you -- a colorful bio-pigment! A perfect way for beginners and experts alike to do fun and safe biotechnology experiments at home, in the classroom, the makerspace, community center, or in a local biohacking DIYbio lab!

Yeast can be engineered just as bacteria can using the antibiotic selection as you might have seen in the other Yeast Engineer-it Kit with Arctic Green DNA. As a more complex organism, yeast can also be engineered using a process called metabolic selection.  In this Yeast Engineer-it Kit for Metabolic Selection, you will grow blank yeast and engineer-it using a DNA plasmid with a gene for creating a pink-colored pigment and a gene called URA3. 

URA3 gives yeast the ability to synthesize (create) an enzyme called Orotidine 5'-phosphate decarboxylase (ODCase), so they can in turn create an essential nutrient for survival. In short, your blank yeast are unable to grow unless you either give them the essential nutrient they can not make, or enable them to produce the missing enzyme so they can create the nutrient themselves. This is a very different kind of selection! 

With this kit, you will see how engineering different organisms can be done using similar processes using different principles. 

If you haven't already, you may want to consider starting with the Yeast Canvas Kit, a fun biology-meets-art kit to learn how to grow yeast and make agar Petri dishes and the Yeast Engineer-it Kit in Arctic Green DNA. With these basic skills, you can move on to the Yeast Engineer-it Kit with confidence and complete your first genetic engineering experiment using metabolic selection! 

Unsure what biotechnology and genetic engineering are? Have a look at our short "What is Biotechnology? Genetic Engineering?" post. And remember, no prior knowledge or skills are necessary to get started with Amino Labs beginner's biotechnology kits!  


What will you learn?

With this kit, you will:

1. Make selective & non-selective agar,
2. pour Petri dishes,
3. streak yeast,
4. make yeast chemically competent,
5. engineer yeast using pigment-producing DNA plasmid
6. create positive and negative controls,
7. incubate,
8. View your results!

As yeast grows slower than bacteria (36-48+ hours of incubation ), this kit can take up to 1+ week to complete.

During this biotechnology genetic engineering experiment, you will learn how to use DNA programs to make with biology. You will also see how engineering different organisms can be done using similar processes using different principles.

What's included?

(1) Engineer-it Kit in Individual or Group size: Sterile water, 6cm Petri dish, agar, NS nutrient, ‘blank’ yeast stab, transformation buffer, recovery media, positive control yeast stab, DNA plasmid, streaking stencils, inactivation bag.

• Individual Kits: An individual kit with all the ingredients needed for completing one entire science experience. Great for an individual, family, or a small group — best results using a DNA Playground home or large.

• Classroom/Group Kits: Eight individually packaged kits with the needed ingredients to complete eight entire science experiences. One shared resource bag containing the yeast, 1 DNA program (plasmid), and inactivation bags, which are shared between all participants. Great for the classroom, advanced AP biology, science fair projects, and iGEM teams. Each of the eight experiments can be done individually or in groups of up to 4.— best results using 2 DNA Playgrounds Large.

• Optional: Blacklight Flashlight: This pink DNA is visible under regular light and under blacklight/UV light. While it is optional, you can add one of our Blacklight Flashlights to your cart when adding your kit, or use one you already have. Classic neon blacklights and UV light boxes to see electrophoresis gels also work. This Blacklight Flashlight is a 395nm light and requires one AA battery (not included due to shipping regulations).

• Instructions: a manual with easy-to-understand vocabulary and step-by-step procedures and an online experiment simulation to practice with, teach you fundamentals, and guide you along the way. Available online. See the Resources tab for links!

What else is needed?

To complete this experiment, you will need to have access to either the DNA Playground or, if you have your own laboratory equipment, a 37°C incubator, a hot water bath, crushed ice & ice bucket.

Cleaning and safety supplies are not included in the kit. Necessary safety and cleaning supplies are latex or nitrile gloves, and a chlorinated bleach cleaner or a 10% solution of chlorinated bleach in a spray bottle (you can make this by adding 9 parts water to 1 part bleach in a spray bottle). You can add a Mini Safety Set to your kit which includes gloves and a reusable plastic apron to protect your clothes.

For more information about safety, set up and clean up, you can have a look at the instruction manual for the experiment linked in the Ressources section below, and at the "Practicing safe science" page.

Storage & Shipping

Shipping Times

Experiment kits are shipped 1-10 working days after you place your order. If you require yours for a specific date or event, please contact us before or with your order # so that we can try to make it happen for you! ☺︎ 


For the best results, and the longest shelf life possible, refrigerate the kit(s) upon arrival. You'll find a "Best by" date on the kit's label. This date assumes you've refrigerated your kit upon arrival.

For any questions, don't hesistate to reach out to us - contact us