DNA quantification

UV absorbance or fluorescence DNA measurements with BMG LABTECH plate readers

Accurately quantitate nucleic acids on BMG LABTECH instruments


The quantification of nucleic acids (DNA or RNA) in samples is part of the daily routine in laboratories. Some researchers prefer the UV absorbance method and measure their samples at 260 nm. This is simple and fast and the user does not need to prepare a standard curve to relate the absorbance value to a certain DNA or RNA concentration. The nucleic acids' extinction coefficients are known and integrated into the microplate reader software so that the DNA concentration value will be immediately shown.


Today however, the fluorescent quantification of DNA and RNA has become quite popular. With this method, an increased fluorescence signal is measured once the dye has bound to nucleic acids. The detection of this method can be achieved with a fluorescence microplate reader and needs a standard curve that can associate known concentrations to fluorescence values. These higher efforts are rewarded with higher assay sensitivity than in absorbance detection.


The BMG LABTECH multi-mode microplate reader can perform both kinds of DNA quantification measurements. Additionally, they offer the possibility to measure in very small volumes, down to 2 µl of sample by using the LVis Plate.

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