iLab Student Laboratory

The Student Laboratory is moving!

Thank you for your patience as we move into our new space.  We will do our best to accommodate as many requests as possible. 

See iLab Offerings below to learn about the specific science curriculum that has been developed by Ochsner Education Outreach. 

If you are interested in requesting an iLab offering, please email 

NOTE: We will start accepting iLab Requests for the 2019-2020 school year October 1st. 

The iLab, originally located at Ochsner Medical Center - New Orleans, was developed as an additional resource and training laboratory for schools in our community. It hosts student groups from middle school to college throughout the year. The iLab's outreach efforts were originally expanded to include its own lab curriculum thanks to a generous $5,000 gift awarded to Education Outreach by Cox Charities.

Students and Teachers can benefit from the iLab by:

  • Scheduling an Ochsner-led iLab visit. For more information, please see offerings below.
  • Reserving space to teach specific laboratory curriculum. Teachers are able to utilize the fully-equipped space, alleviating the need for school funded equipment and greatly expanding the types of hands-on modules that could otherwise not be conducted in the classroom.
  • Using the iLab as an extension of the resources already provided.

iLab Offerings

Blue and yellow Ochsner iLab logo.

The below curriculum has been developed by the Ochsner Education Outreach staff. To schedule an iLab visit for your class, please email

Matched-Bone Marrow Transplant 

Educational Topics: DNA, Genetics, Gel Electrophoresis

Students learn about the function of bone marrow and the science behind matching donors and recipients for bone marrow transplantation. Students will perform gel electrophoresis on recipient and potential donor DNA to decide if they have any matches.

ELISA- Mapping a Flu Outbreak

Educational Topics: Immunology, Microbiology, Public Health

Students learn about the cells involved in protecting the body from infection. We create a mock flu epidemic by asking students to mix sample ‘body fluids’ with each other, one of which is infected with ‘flu’. The shared fluids are tested by ELISA to find out who is infected. Using this information, the class attempts to map the chain of infection and determine the initial infected student.

Cell Death- Testing New Cancer Drugs

Educational Topics: Cell Biology, Cancer, Spectrophotometry, Drug Development 

Students learn about the role mutations play in cancer development and the process of testing new cancer treatments. Using spectrophotometry, students compare the ability of several botanical compounds to kill cancer cells through apoptosis. Students calculate the percent cytotoxicity using a provided formula to determine how the test compounds compare with a current market drug.

Diabetes Explorer- Determining Diabetes Status

Educational Topics: Diabetes, Diagnostic Testing, Standard Curve Analysis, Spectrophotometry

Students learn about the molecular basis for diabetes as well as common symptoms and risk factors. The lab focuses on diabetes testing and diagnosis of 3 patients. Critical reading of the patient’s history for signs and symptoms allows students to predict the diabetes status of each patient. Spectrophotometry of patients’ blood samples (simulated blood), along with standard curve analysis, allows the calculation of the blood sugar concentration of each sample. Diabetes status is then assigned based on calculated blood glucose levels. Students then reflect on the agreement between predictions and actual results.

Henrietta’s Story- Exploring Differences Between Normal and Cancer Cells

Educational Topics: Cancer, Cell & Molecular Biology, HPV Virology, Public Health

Students learn about the role of HPV in cervical cancer, screening for cervical cancer and the contribution of Henrietta Lacks to scientific advances and bioethics. The lab centers around determining cancer risk for four patients based on cytology and HPV DNA analysis. Students assign cancer risk to patient cervical cells based on cell morphology and predict the HPV status of the sample. Gel electrophoresis on the corresponding DNA samples allows students to determine the HPV DNA status. Students reflect on the accuracy of their predictions and the consequences of the additional DNA information to the patient’s cancer risk.

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