How is DNA isolated from cells

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Area of ‚Äč‚ÄčExpertise - Biochemistry, genetic engineering

DNA isolation is used to purify DNA molecules from biological material. The DNA to be isolated should be separated from other cell components such as proteins, sugar compounds and small molecules and obtained in as pure a form as possible. All cell and tissue types can be used as the starting material.

With regard to the DNA to be isolated, a distinction can be made between genomic and plasmid DNA. Isolation always begins with the disruption of the cells used, while the following work steps depend on the type of DNA and the specific starting material. The classic methods use phenol or phenol-chloroform mixtures to separate the proteins. The DNA is then precipitated with alcohols such as ethanol or isopropanol.

In the meantime, many so-called kits are also commercially available, which simplify the process and can be particularly helpful in the case of difficult preparation problems. DNA isolation is typically the starting point for subsequent molecular genetic analyzes and genetic modifications.

See also: deoxyribonucleic acids

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