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Automatic Sequencer

Charles A Miller oravaxcm at world.std.com
Sun Oct 20 01:42:03 EST 1996

We have had an ABI Prism 310 for a few months now. The only problems it ever
gave us was that it took them a while to get it setup. There was somehitng
wrong with it and they had to replace something. After that, it is possibly
the most amazing piece of lab equipment I've ever had the pleasure of using.
Although I've never used the ALF or the ABI 377 (both use a slab gel),
I saw a presentation given by Pharmacia for the ALF express. Though they
claim that it is a good machine (I'm sure it is), the idea of puring slab
gels and running four reactions is not appealing at all. If you want
the results from 10 sequencing reactions obtained all at once then it
is the machine for you (if you don't mind running 4X10 reactions). If you
like the idea that running one reaction is just as easy as running 
48 or 96 and that for each of those reations you only need one tube AND
that you can stop the machine after each reaction and either add another
tube on at the end of the list OR have it rerun a reaction using a longer
"injection" time AND that you can set all this stuff up and leave for the 
weekend, then the ABI 310 is a good choice. I have to say though, I have only 
paticipated in manual sequencing once and I know that it takes many tries to
get it right. When I used the ABI, the guy in the lab next door showed
me what to do and within 20 or 30 minutes, I could do just about anything
(change the polymer once a week, change the buffers every couple days). The
only thing I don't know how to do is change the capillary. That is only 
because you don't have to change it until you've run about 200 reactions
(100 if you want to follow the factory specs). 

I don't work for ABI, but I have to say that this machine is so pathetically
simple to use and easy to setup, that I would recommend it to anyone in
the market. The only thing I would like to see is some optimization for
longer reads. We get ~400 nt of good sequence (it usually picks up 
sequence about 2-5 nt's from the end of the primer!), but I know that 
for really long reads (~800nt) you are looking at a $100K machine probably.

Good Luck!

Chuck Miller

oravaxcm at world.std.com

Koraimann Guenther (guenther.koraimann at kfunigraz.ac.at) wrote:
: Hi!
: Does anyone out there have experience with the ABI 310 Genetic Analyzer
: for DNA sequencing ? How does this machine compare with other
: sequencers, e.g. the ALF express or the Licor system ?
: Any help with this is greatly appreciated.
: -- 
: Institut fuer Mikrobiologie
: Universitaetsplatz 2
: A- 8010 Graz
: Tel: (316) 380 5620
: Fax: (316) 380 9898
: e-mail:guenther.koraimann at kfunigraz.ac.at
: http://bkfug.kfunigraz.ac.at/microbiology/

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