Qiagen refuses to tell!

Sam Michaelson sam.michaelson at dsto.defence.gov.au
Wed Sep 4 22:39:17 EST 1996


Keld Sorensen <KeldS at uic.edu> wrote:
>[snip - some whining about students using kits and not knowing chemistry]
>-
>I seem to remember the same whining when calculators where first
>used!!  - I guess I just gave my age away, but WHY is it important
>to mix your own reagents ?  

I think there's nothing wrong with taking advantage of the convenience of 
pre-mixed reagents, as this often saves time and reduces potential health 
risks, e.g. with premixed acrylamide (unless you're a PhD student, in 
which case doing everything yourself from scratch seems to be considered 
by supervisors to be a good character-building exercise).  

I think the point is that if you know what is in the reagents, then 
firstly, in an emergency situation, e.g. 
"Oh-damn-I've-spilled-that-last-bottle-of-buffer-X-and-it's-friday-night" 
you can, if you have to, make them up yourself.  Secondly, in a situation 
where results are not turning out as expected, then an understanding of 
what's in a kit and how it works means that you are probably more in a 
position to undertake systematic and reasonably intelligent 
troubleshooting.

Sam Michaelson




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