Questions relating to protocols, procedures, and good practice when using laboratory equipment.

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2
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1answer
40 views

Safety of using industrial water for hand washing

Industrial water taps are present in most biology laboratories I have been too. There are accompanied by a sign stating "do not drink". So obviously it is not a good idea to drink it. However I ...
2
votes
1answer
29 views

What is the importance of urea in mass spectrometry?

What is the importance of urea in mass spectrometry? We use 8M urea to FASP our proteins prior to mass spectrometry. What is the significance of using 8M urea? and how does it affect the proteins?
3
votes
1answer
40 views

How can I purify RNA after gel electrophoresis to remove residual acrylamide?

I sometimes use denaturing gel electrophoresis on a preparative scale to purify RNA produced by in vitro transcription. The major issue with this is that the sample after extraction from the gel still ...
3
votes
1answer
38 views

Well to well variation in thermal cycler fluorescence?

We have an old BioRad ICycler Thermal Cycler with MyIQ single color fluorescent detector. While it's meant for RT-PCR, we've been using it for melt curves and binding assays for different types of RNA ...
6
votes
3answers
581 views

Should I dilute DNA with water or elution buffer?

I've extracted DNA using a kit and final step is eluted with buffer. If I must dilute my DNA samples, do I use the same elution buffer or can I use milliq water?
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0answers
11 views

How does air-liquid interface (ALI) culture work?

For studying diseases, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cells are often grown in air liquid interface. I understand that the common way of establishing this these days is to grow ...
2
votes
3answers
57 views

Long term storage of agarose-ethidium bromide gels that have already been cast

I have come up with what I thought was a clever idea: Store the agarose gels I pour, and only cut as many lanes as I need to run later, minimizing wasted agarose (and wasted effort/time) when I need ...
3
votes
1answer
26 views

What's up with all the vague protocols? [closed]

I have lost count of how many protocols I've seen, including those supposed to be professionally written (such as manuals that come with kits from well known brands, or methods sections of papers in ...
0
votes
2answers
111 views

Purifying a linear plasmid after restriction digest?

I expressed a yeast vector in E.coli and purified about 13µg of it. I then linearized it using a restriction enzyme, and attempted to gel purify it. I attempted this twice. The gel showed a clear ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

Does methanol fixation deform cultured cells?

I use methanol fixation (@ -20⁰C for 10 minutes) when performing immunofluorescence assays on cultured cells. Generally speaking, this results in very good antibody staining. However, the cells tend ...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

How to prepare sample for SDS PAGE?

I usually take my protein sample 0.8ml and sample buffer(2X) 0.2ml for my sample preparation in SDS PAGE. Am I using correct proportion? my protein sample concentration is 4.1mg/ml. What is the ...
1
vote
1answer
54 views

How to separate peptide on SDS PAGE?

I want to separate 1600 Da peptide on SDS PAGE, on 20% GEL I didn't get any band, How can I separate on PAGE? Can I use 25% SDS PAGE?
5
votes
2answers
111 views

Alternatives to trypsin for cell detachment?

I have ran out of trypsin and need to passage my cells (immortalized chondrocytes, C28/I2) today or tomorrow. I have been out of town and forgot to order more trypsin. I was wondering if there are ...
0
votes
1answer
29 views

Does adding antibiotic after 5-10 mins of innoculation affect the protein yield or growth?

I've asked a lab colleague the same question. She said, it would loosen the bacterial cells in the LB medium and plasmids would come out. Is that true? and why?
9
votes
3answers
103 views

How can I label cryotubes in a way that eliminates the problem of legible hand-writing?

My lab stores biological material (tissue, cells, plasma, serum) in a -130 C, liquid nitrogen freezer. The cryotubes that we use to store a samples are labelled by hand which frequently creates ...
5
votes
2answers
62 views

How do you visualize RNA on a gel?

I have run an in vitro transcription reaction and produced some RNA of a single species and definite size. I would like to visualize it to check if the reaction worked. Can I do this on an agarose ...
8
votes
1answer
207 views

How do I put on a labcoat?

Let's assume I am wearing a labcoat for two reasons: Prevent the various bacteria, proteins, skin cells and substances on my clothes and my skin from contaminating my experiments. Prevent various ...
4
votes
2answers
61 views

Short, concise, practical manual for doing experimental biology

I am am physical scientist working in biology, and have recently started doing experiments. I would like a manual akin to "Numerical Recipes", but for the lab: straight forward, easy instructions on ...
2
votes
0answers
64 views

Origin of the 260/280 ratio?

This is not a duplicate of all the other 260/280 ratio questions, I already know that DNA is supposed to be 1.8 and RNA is supposed to be 2.0. However, this might be more appropriate for chemistry, ...
4
votes
0answers
50 views

Can microdialysis be made in Drosophila melanogaster?

I've asked this before in stack overflow's cognitive science community, and someone recommended me to ask here: I've found a couple of studies using microdialysis on insects, but didn't found any in ...
3
votes
2answers
58 views

What is an Ihh-/- mouse?

This one is too basic question: I just came across $Ihh^{-/-}\ $ mouse. Is that means this mouse devoid of that gene Ihh. What is this sign called and are there other such representations?
4
votes
1answer
136 views

DpnI over-digestion

We have a long protocol that we are optimizing that includes DpnI digestion of a PCR product (to remove any of the template DNA if it's methylated, and while we're not certain in the blind tests, ...
1
vote
1answer
49 views

What is an effective method for putting on blue rubber butyl stoppers?

They look like this. We have to do a lot of gas sampling and these are really difficult to assemble. I've been scouring the internet for advice but there are none. Do you have experience with ...
2
votes
1answer
129 views

Why does the pET- expression vector contain a LacI gene additionally to the one in the genome?

The pET plasmid is used for protein expression with T7 promotor in expression strains, such as E.coli BL21(DE3) It contains a lacI gene which codes for the lac repressor protein, a protein of ...
1
vote
1answer
394 views

RNeasy Mini Kit low 260/230 ratio — can I purify this RNA for further use?

I used Qiagen's RNeasy Mini Kit to isolate RNA from 5*10^5 C28/I2 (immortalized human chondrocytes). However, my yield is low (~25 ng/ul), but my 260/280 ratio is great (~2.3), and my 260/230 ratio is ...
13
votes
2answers
439 views

Are there issues with filling PCR tubes to capacity?

I'm planning to scale up a PCR reaction, and I'm wondering if filling the PCR tubes to the maximum volume of 200 ul would be a problem. It would mean a lot less pipetting as I would only need 1/4 of ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

How does a TOPflash/FOPflash assay work to detect beta-catenin protein expression?

I am reading an article (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3596711/) wherein a TOPflash/FOPflash assay is used to detect beta-catenin protein levels in a COS-7 cell line. I can't find a good ...
5
votes
2answers
204 views

introduction to Chip Seq

I hope this question is suitable for this site. I am concerned about the Chip experiment part so I think it should be okay. I am a Applied Math student starting to get into bioinformatics and so I've ...
3
votes
1answer
103 views

Ideal lab glassware cleaner for molecular biologist

I'm using Alconox powder detergent to clean my laboratory glassware, the powder is a pain to store near the sink and to use. Would like to make a concentrated liquid to use in its stead. I have ...
3
votes
1answer
56 views

PCR master mix contents

I am running PCR reactions with different sets of degenerate primers and I want to know what should go into the master mix My usual master mix: DEPC water PCR buffer (-Mg) 25mM MgCl2 10mM ...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

Do you have experience with PacBio?

I prepare a experiment and I found $PacBio SMRT$ as the great way to sequence my PCR products. I find the cost: library preparation 655 dollars + sequencing 435 dollars. It seems very low. Do you have ...
3
votes
1answer
84 views

How to measure quality and quantity of DNA?

I would like to mesure DNA. I quantify the concentration with Qubit fluorometer, but I would like to know also quality of DNA. I try BioAnalyzer (Agilent),but without success. Bioanalyzer measure DNA ...
2
votes
0answers
553 views

What are the roles of guanidine-HCl and ethanol in binding of DNA to silica?

I'm trying to understand how exactly the binding to silica gel (in kits) step works and I cannot find any papers which provide an explanation of the physics or chemistry; especially on the way that ...
2
votes
1answer
77 views

Substitute 25mM dNTPs mix with 10mM dNTPs

I need to make a solution of multiple compounds, one of them is dNTPs. The recipe calls for 20 μl 25 mM dNTPs in a 1250 μL master mix. Unfortunately I do not have it available at that concentration, ...
3
votes
1answer
29 views

Changing time and rpm of centifuge

Inspired by this question, I want to ask a question about centrifugation. Suppose a protocol says : 10 min at 2500 rpm . Can we instead centifuge for 5 min at 5000 rpm or 20 min at 1250 rpm ?
4
votes
2answers
2k views

NaCl role in CTAB - DNA complex in DNA extraction

I have a question about the role of NaCl in the DNA extraction process. So for NaCl concentrations under 0.5M, CTAB and DNA molecules can create complexes. In those concentrations, proteins and other ...
2
votes
0answers
128 views

Gibson assembly using NeBuilder

I am supposed to construct a plasmid that contains features from two other plasmids. My strategy is to generate three fragments form the two other plasmids. I was encouraged to try Gibson assembly, ...
2
votes
1answer
82 views

Plasmid maintenance

I have obtained some plasmids used as integration vectors, this question may apply to all plasmids. I would like to have a somewhat continuos source for these plasmids, let's say that the origin of ...
8
votes
2answers
466 views

Gloves for Cell Culture?

I always wear gloves when I'm doing cell culture. Moreover, I always spray my gloves with ethanol to disinfect, so that I don't contaminate everything. However, I recently heard the argument that ...
2
votes
1answer
49 views

Pippin prep kits - expiration date

Do you use Pippin prep? We would like to buy it, but we need more info. What is the expiration date of kits for Pippin prep? Thanks!
5
votes
1answer
634 views

How to avoid air bubbles while pipetting?

I get air bubbles while pipetting small volumes. How can I avoid them ?
3
votes
1answer
171 views

Benefits of CLARITY?

What are the benefits of CLARITY over this technique that was published more than a year earlier? Of course the second technique needs a fancier microscope that is likely more expensive and requires ...
3
votes
1answer
33 views

Prevalent large (>=90kDa) maintenance protein/loading control

I was wondering if anyone had recommendations for good, large (hopefully 100kDa+), control proteins that would be present in most mammalian cells. I'm working mostly with tissue samples from humans ...
1
vote
1answer
63 views

In vitro transcription, contamination problem

I am using a RNA which is in vitro transcripted before I started my project. It turned out it is not prepared properly and has DNA contamination. Instead of perform the in vitro transcription again, ...
3
votes
1answer
207 views

For people who work in microbiology labs, what software do you use to manage your strains?

It's just a small microbiology lab that currently records everything on paper, and there's quite few mutants as well. Is Excel commonly used for this sort of thing? Or is there a better software to ...
5
votes
2answers
237 views

poor RNA quality from zebrafish embryos

Does anyone routinely do RNA isolation from zebrafish embryos? I have embryos from different stages but all below 24hpf. This is the protocol I follow: Take 10-20 embryos Wash once with milliQ ...
4
votes
4answers
144 views

Electronic laboratory notebook (ELN)

I have been using old style lab book for some time now but with increasing work on computer and storing sequencing results and gel pictures on computer it would be nice to have everything on computer ...
2
votes
3answers
149 views

Bacterial cell lysis buffer used in proteomics procedures

What kinds of detergent-free bacterial lysis buffers exist? The proteins we're extracting will be later analyzed by LC-MS/MS, and we're looking for a lysis buffer that won't interfere with this ...
3
votes
1answer
547 views

Problem with bacterial transformation with electroporation

I have a problem with a bacterial transformation of a yeast gene that I can not solve. I isolated yeast DNA and did a PCR to get my product. I am using pCGCUm vector with a GFP construct. I digest ...
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0answers
30 views

Improving throughput of CFU plating?

In a separate question I've described my general experimental setup where I need to measure the number of live cells in a growing bacterial culture in a fairly rapid and high-throughput manner. In ...