EtBr Destruction Protocol
E85J at UNB.CA
Thu Jun 17 08:20:26 EST 1993
We're more than just a little paranoid about EtBr here, which is not
such a bad thing in my opinion.
I've used the following protocol (gleaned from a news letter the
safety office here gets from the Dept. of Occupational Health and
Safety at the U. of Alabama (Birmingham)) with great success:
Add 20 ml of 50% hypophosphorus acid to a solution of 4.2 g of
sodium nitrite in 300 ml ddH2O. Stir briefly to mix. (prepared
fresh on the day of use).
(1) To your EtBr contaminated waste (I store gels and EtBr solution
waste in a large jar), add ddH2O to dilute the EtBr to a final
concentration of 0.5 mg/ml.
(2) Add the DECON solution to a final concentration of 25 %.
(3) Stir well and let mixture sit in fume hood for 24 hours.
(4) Check solution under UV for fluorescence. If there is still
appreciable fluorescence, repeat (2) and (3) using fresh DECON
(5) Neutralize with sodium bicarbonate and discard as non-hazardous
waste. Liquid goes down the drain at pH 7.0, gel bits go in the
I've used this protocol a couple of times with great success.
(E85J at UNB.CA)
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