"air" type thermal cyclers

Shiao Y. Wang sywang at whale.st.usm.edu
Fri Mar 18 23:49:08 EST 1994

Majed Abu-Hajir (abuhajir at post.its.mcw.edu) wrote:
: Marcella E Grebus (mgrebus at magnus.acs.ohio-state.edu) wrote:
: : hey folks,

: : does anyone here work with one of those "air" type thermal-cyclers?
: : the kind that cycles air instead of using a heat block.

: : our lab is interested in looking into them, because we need to
: : get another thermal-cycler, and i've heard that the ones that
: : rely on air circulation reduce ramping times significantly but
: : may have some disadvantages.

: : i'd appreciate any advice, experience, comments, ordering/manufacturer
: : information [eg, 1-800 number].  if there's interest, i'd be happy
: : to post a summary of e-mails received.

: : also, if you feel strongly that a particular type of thermal-cycler
: : is the "best", let's discuss pro's and con's.  i'm really open to
: : any brand/model.

: : thanks in advance,
: : --marcy  <mgrebus at magnus.acs.ohio-state.edu>

: I am looking into using one myself. I have not started yet. The way I
: understand it: the Air Thermal cyclers have the advantage of faster cycling,
: as you mentioned and the capability to run several types of reactions (ie: in
: tubes, or plates or slides for In Situ amplificatin). A disadvatage is that
: some people feel you should avoid radioactive materials because of dificulty 
: in cleaning the air thermal cycler and that may become a source of 
: contamination.

The cycling time is actually slower because air transfers heat less
efficiently than mineral oil found in more traditional thermal cyclers.
However, a major advantage is the much greater number of samples that you
can handle at one time (literally hundreds). Another advantage is the
more uniform heating and cooling. If you have large numbers of samples or
have multiple formats, air thermal cycler is the way to go.

More information about the Methods mailing list