The technology is particularly useful for purification of nucleic acids from limited samples, yields nucleic acids without carryover of substances which interfere with downstream applications, and is ideal for multiple applications, including but not limited to forensics, sensitive PCR reactions, and high throughput experiments.
Forensics laboratories routinely process crime scene samples for DNA analysis. The aim is to generate STR (short tandem repeat) profiles for human identification that meet the stringent requirements of the criminal justice system. Conventional DNA purification methods involve salting out with harsh organic solvents, anion exchange, and silica-based extraction, which can compromise subsequent DNA processing in STR profiling.
Additionally, crime scene samples vary in quantity and quality, adding to the challenge of reliably purifying DNA suitable for forensics. By eliminating chemicals that can interfere with the integrity of DNA samples, ChargeSwitch Technology can offer sensitivity for purifying and quantitating DNA from forensic samples, thereby meeting the criminal justice system requirements for STR profiling.
ChargeSwitch Technology produces nucleic acids that can be used in sensitive PCR reactions, such as the detection of low copy number genes for either real-time quantitative PCR or traditional PCR. The most common RNA or DNA purification techniques use reagents that can inhibit thermostable polymerase activity (PCR reactions), even though those reagents are difficult to detect when measuring nucleic acid quality on gels or by UV spectrophotometry.
Data shows that even low levels of alcohols or chaotropic salts can completely inhibit polymerase activity, thereby causing PCR to fail. The ChargeSwitch Technology was designed to use 100% aqueous solutions. Ethanol, phenol, chloroform, and ionic chaotropes have all been completely eliminated, removing any possibility of PCR failure due to their presence.
More and more laboratories are investing in techniques requiring the high throughput purification of nucleic acids and demanding faster purification methods. Traditional nucleic acid purification technologies are readily integrated into robotic system, but they require time-consuming centrifugation or vacuum steps, which can lead to bottlenecks.
By avoiding the use of these steps, ChargeSwitch Technology accelerates the isolation of plasmids, RNA, PCR products, or genomic DNA, allowing scientists to move on to the next experimental steps more quickly. Additionally, ChargeSwitch Technology surface chemistry can be coated onto any surface, making possible flexible new formats for these streamlined processes.