OnScreen DNA Lite Brings Virtual DNA Model to Classrooms

OnScreen Science, Inc. announced Thursday the release of OnScreen DNA Lite, an interactive computer model of the DNA double helix. The software provides a model with 35 base pairs that are color coded. It also includes a separate on-screen linear representation of the sequence of nucleotide bases, and it can simulate processes involving the separation and reconnection of DNA strands.

The software includes activity guides and tests for guiding students (and other users) through the double helix, but the company noted that the software leaves it to teachers to provide biological and contextual understanding of DNA.

DNA Lite is being offered at US$49, and OnScreen Science said that a more full-featured version of the product will be released in 2005. Multi-computer licenses are also available. Currently, DNA Lite is available only for Mac OS X (10.3 and later), but a version for Windows is coming some time in 2006. You can find more information at the companyis Web site.