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Silly glass plate question

Bruce Roe BROE at aardvark.ucs.uoknor.edu
Tue Mar 19 10:16:02 EST 1996


 You write: 
=> 
=> This is probably a stupid question, but ...
=> 
=> Has anybody tried using ordinary glass plates on their ABI373 sequencers. 
=> Since the laser and flourescent wavelengths are visible light, I was
=> wondering if I could go to the local glazier and have ordinary glass plates
=> cut to the proper size.  Or is there some special optical quality glass that
=> would be suitable but still not cost the arm and a leg that ABI charges.
=> 

Hi all,
	Sorry for answering 2 questions in a row but I'm on a roll.  :-)

No question is a stupid one, only some answers are, and in this case
I hope to mine's not.  Been there, done that and even searched high and
low for a replacement for the incredably overpriced ABI plates.  However,
because "ordinary glass" contains some impurities (mainly potassium and
trace amounts of heavy metals), "ordinary glass" fluoresses (sp?) at just
the wrong wavelengths and masks the signal.  Thus, we are stuck using low
fluorescent glass plates.  The good news is you could by a Licor Sequencer
and use "ordinary glass" plates because their detection is in the near IR,
not in the visible range.  However, since most of us have ABI's for various
reasons (I don't want to start a religious war here), we are stuck with having
to use low potassium glass.  The other problem is that the plates MUST be
optically flat, especially with the 0.2mm spacers in the 377's and that
operation costs.  
	We did find a supplier for plates of similar quality to the ABI
plates, but at a lower cost, and that is Sooner Scientific.  We also are
using their pre-mixed gels and find them to work very well.  Even though
they are an Oklahoma company, I have no affiliation with them except that I'm
a happy camper when I can save a few bucks.  There was a discussion earlier
about Sooner's pre-mixed gels as being not as good as home made but we have
not observed any problems with over 6 months of use.
	Again, hope this helps.
Cheers.......bruce

ps. ya'all might want to check out our WWW site as I've got our protocol
    book on line, and also check out two other sites I know of with protocols
    for DNA sequencing, etc, on-line: 
	http://genome.wustl.edu/gsc/gschmpg.html
	http://www-genome.wi.mit.edu/sequencing/index.html




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