ethidium bromide: add to gel before pouring or stain afterwards

vargaa at vargaa at
Sat Jun 27 22:21:48 EST 1998

My lab collegues and I have been debating this for a while now...

To detect RFLP's, we currently add ethidum-bromide to a melted, high
resolution gel, then re-nuke it so to pour an even gel.  I, however, think
this is a highly mutagenic way to do things, particularly since the gel is
volatile, the ethidium following with the vapour...  I would prefer to stain
the gel afterwards, following by a destaining bath in water, of which I have
noted to work perfectly fine...

I have visited other labs doing gel electrophoresis, and most seem to stain
the gels after running.. not prior to running into the gel before pouring...
this is sometimes hard, especially when using large gels (minimum of 30

Please, end our constant in-fighting!  Does anyone else add the ethidium prior
to nuking and pouring?  or do most of you RFLP'ers etc stain the gel after

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