You need to have JavaScript enabled to view this video clip.

Description

Researchers at Kew Gardens use a wide variety of techniques to determine evolutionary relationships between species, including molecular analysis and electron microscopy. They have a massive archive and a DNA database that can be used to find related species.

Botanist, Timothy Walker describes how the scientists at Kew are using these techniques to research the potential medicinal properties of plants to treat diseases like Malaria.
This clip is from:
First broadcast:
7 June 2011

Classroom Ideas

Students could do practical work to extract DNA from plant material, such as strawberries, kiwis, or onions. (This is quite a simple procedure and instructions can be found from many online sources). This can be done in the context of considering why scientific analysis of plants is important to humans, particularly in the context of medicine.