DNA/RNA General considerations
Hellabio manufactures various forms of gels for DNA/RNA as well as customized [OEM].
Agarose gel electrophoresis is the easiest and commonest way of separating and analyzing DNA. The purpose of the gel might be to look at the DNA, to quantify it or to isolate a particular band. The DNA is visualized in the gel by addition of ethidium bromide. This binds strongly to DNA by intercalating between the bases and is fluorescent meaning that it absorbs invisible UV light and transmits the energy as visible orange light.
The technique of electrophoresis is based on the fact that DNA is negatively charged at neutral pH due to its phosphate backbone. For this reason, when an electrical potential is placed on the DNA it will move toward the positive pole.
Most Agarose gels are made between 0.7% and 2%. A 0.7% gel will show good separation (resolution) of large DNA fragments (5–10 kb) and a 2% gel will show good resolution for small fragments (0.2–1 kb). Some people go as high as 3% for separating very tiny fragments. Low percentage gels are very weak and may break when you try to lift them. High percentage gels are often brittle and do not set evenly. We recommend 1, 7% gels.