Your Diet and Your DNA

Time to complete course: 35 min.

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About Your Diet and Your DNA Virtual Lab Simulation

Everything you eat will impact your DNA. In this simulation, you will learn about the connection between nutrients in your diet and the stability of your DNA.

Food composition and digestion

Join two young school girls and discover how their contrasting food choices impact them. You will review their food choices by looking at the nutrients’ 3D structures and compositions. Next, you will dive deeper into the human digestive system. Through detailed 3D animations, you’ll get the opportunity to travel through the gut with the bacteria and see how nutrients are absorbed in the human body.

DNA experiments

You will perform two experiments to uncover how nutrients impact the DNA structure. In these experiments, you will compare samples taken from people with healthy and unhealthy diets. In the first experiment, you will measure the DNA telomere length. In the second experiment, you will measure the DNA adduct level from colon samples.

Plan a healthy meal

Finally, you will use your acquired knowledge to plan a healthy meal for Mia, who is a school athlete. You can choose from a range of different food options to build your meal plan. Will you be able to help Mia get her energy back?

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Follow Lily’s quest for planning a healthy diet for her best friend, Mia, who is lacking energy for her athletic performances, and learn how an unhealthy diet can impact DNA stability by measuring telomere length and DNA adducts from human samples.

Techniques in Lab

  • Flow cytometry
  • Micropipetting
  • Histology slide preparation
  • Microscopy
  • Diet planning

Learning Objectives

At the end of this simulation, you will be able to…

  • Describe nutrient compositions of healthy and unhealthy diets
  • Explain how genomic instability may lead to the development of diseases such as cancer
  • Summarize the impact of diet on genomic stability

Simulation Features

Length – 35 minutes
Languages – English

Examples of Related Standards


Life Sciences related 1st year onwards


No direct alignment


7.2 Transcription and gene expression


No direct alignment

Screenshots of Your Diet and Your DNA Virtual Lab Simulation


Dr. Caroline Bull

Food and Nutrition scientist
CSIRO Health and Biosecurity

Dr. Michael Conlon

Food and Nutrition scientist
CSIRO Health and Biosecurity

CSIRO Education and Outreach

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