Protein Visualization study update

Molly Scott m.scott at scienceboard.net
Thu Nov 8 11:01:08 EST 2001

Study Snapshot
The Science Advisory Board's ongoing study, "Protein Visualization" 
is providing a number of interesting insights into the most current 
areas of investigation in protein and proteomic research. It is the 
fourth in an eight-part series of studies entitled, "The Tools & 
Techniques of Protein Science Catalyzing the Future of Proteomics." 
Almost 250 scientists engaged in protein research have already 
participated in this study now being conducted at the Science 
Advisory Board's Website, www.scienceboard.net. 

Interim study results indicate that respondents predominantly use a 
scanning densitometer to image one-dimensional polyacrylamide gels 
(PAGE), while they use charge-coupled device cameras to image 
one-dimensional agarose gels. There is also a difference in the 
location of these two pieces of equipment: scanning densitometers are 
typically located in an area shared by other labs on-site, and 
charge-coupled device cameras are frequently found in a core 
facility.  However, the number one factor that would influence a 
respondent's lab to purchase either of these imaging systems over the 
other is the quality of its image resolution.

One-dimensional PAGE is by far the most popular technique for 
performing qualitative evaluations, quantitative measurements and 
obtaining publication-quality figures.  The second most popular 
technique used for these imaging applications is one-dimensional 
agarose gels.  Interesting, two-dimensional gel electrophoresis is 
one of the least used techniques for imaging proteins.

Colorimetric stains appear to be the top choice among respondents 
performing protein analysis/characterization, identification and 
purification procedures. For researchers hoping to analyze or 
characterize proteins, radioactively labeling them is the next 
popular technique.  Fluorescent staining is the second choice for 
researchers trying to identify proteins.  Though respondents specify 
that they use different types of stains and labels depending upon the 
procedure they perform, the primary reason they select one particular 
stain or label is its ability to detect low quantities of proteins.

The Science Advisory Board is an online panel of more than 5,600 
scientists, physicians and other life science and medical 
professionals from 62 countries.  By convening electronically, 
Science Advisory Board members participate in online studies to voice 
their opinions on issues that directly affect the evolution and 
development of the tools and techniques of their professions.

If you are interested in contributing your own opinions on the tools 
and techniques of protein science or participating in other studies 
that may be of interest to you, please register for our Research 
Panel at www.scienceboard.net, or contact Molly Scott, Membership 
Coordinator, for The Science Advisory Board at 
m.scott at scienceboard.net for membership information and study 
details. Your identity and personal information will be held in the 
strictest confidence, and you will receive compensation for any 
studies in which you choose to participate.

Molly Scott
Membership Coordinator

"Expert Insights from Gene to Drug"
The Science Advisory Board
2111 Wilson Boulevard
Suite 1200
Arlington, VA 22201
Tel: (703) 525-3872 x 357
Fax: (703) 522-3685
m.scott at scienceboard.net
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