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LacZ is definitely Hello World in microbiology. From there you typically scale up with inducible/repressible promoters. Ara comes to mind.

GFP is a fun product to learn hydrophobic column chromatography. I still think it's best to start with nucleic acid separation before protein separation, though.

Aside from yeasts, there's no way you can do Eukaryotic stuff easily. You'd need a laminar flow hood and very sterile incubators.




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