Qiagen column complaint

Bruce Elder elder at theriondna.com
Mon Oct 18 12:33:48 EST 1999

Hi all,

I had a similar problem about 10 years ago, with very similar response from
Qiagen. My bet was they had a bad production run of column material and
were unwilling to admit it (or were unaware of it).
Currently, we use their DNeasy columns for mouse-tail genomic DNA preps,
but only for samples we will subsequently PCR. We have found that DNA from
these columns does not perform very well when used in Southern assays. In
addition, one of our clients has made a similar observation. When I went
over this with Qiagen tech service, they did everything but state it was my
fault entirely. I went to the time and trouble to compare Qiagen DNA with
phenol and Clontech Nucleospin extracted DNA, side by side, same mouse
strain, equal loading, gel, filter, probe, hybe and wash. For the most
part, only the phenol and Nucleospin samples could be scored after a 2.5
day exposure. Qiagens response to this was to suggest some more experiments
that basically repeated what I had already done. Sorry, but my time is more
valuable than that.
We now use Clontechs Nucleospin product for all Southern samples, and will
probably switch over entirely after a time.

I don't mind so much that there are problems, but I do mind being treated
like an idiot. As Rea said, "We are NOT ROOKIES!"


>We have been using Qiagen columns for purifying plasmid DNA for a very
>long time without problems.  Recently, we purchased a pack of 25 tip
>100 columns, of which none worked.  Ie., we were unable to recover any
>DNA from a number of different plasmid midi preps with a whole variety
>of vectors including Bluescript, pGEM, RCAS, and pCDNA3.  Three
>different people in the lab using three different stashes of solutions
>(both Qiagen made and home-made) were unable to get any DNA purified on
>these columns.  We are NOT ROOKIES!  When we called Qiagen to complain,
>they treated us like idiots, taking us through every step of the
>protocol (even though we had checked through all this already). We even
>told them that one of my students just scaled his culture up and used a
>tip 500 column, and got plenty of good clean plasmid DNA-- so our
>protocols for culturing, lysis, etc DO work. They said it was unlikely
>to be a bad batch of columns because they made large lots of them and
>had no complaints. They suggested that we were overloading the columns
>(if you overload, howcum you don't get ANY DNA back again?-- if you
>don't get it back, it must not be binding or not eluting)  Qiagen was
>unwilling to replace the entire pack (they said they would send us 4
>replacements).  This was very disturbing to me, considering the cost of
>each column. Have any of you had this problem (with the columns and
>with customer service) at Qiagen?
>Rae Nishi, PhD
>Oregon Health Sciences University
>Portland Oregon

Bruce Elder, Ph. D.
Senior Manager, Molecular Genetics
Charles River Therion
185 Jordan Road
Troy, NY  12180
elder at theriondna.com
Ph:  (518) 286-0016
Fax: (518) 286-0018

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