Help! ethidium bromide accident!

Wolfgang Schechinger hubahopp at
Fri Nov 29 12:44:04 EST 2002


1 year ago, I performed an extensive PubMed search to find out about the
real toxicity of EtBr. I couldn't find anything useful. Despite that,
mainly the companies who are selling appliances for decontamination and
detoxification claim that EtBr was highly toxic. I do not want to abgrogate
the potential hazard of EtBr since it binds to DNA and some people
successfully have been using it to introduce frameshifts in PCR, so one
should exercise care when handling the chemical, mainly when using the
powder. Actually, EtBr is a nice chemical since if you spill it, you'll
find it by color or at least by UV. 

BTW, did anyone ever think of the fate of mutagens excreted by people who
receive cytostatic drugs for cancer treatment? They all are going down the
drain and nobody ever cares...

Happy weekend,


>I know what you mean I once overheard some coworkers obsessing about it. 
>The language they were using would have been appropriate for an 
>infective encysted pathogen. I wear gloves and am careful, but there is 
>a big difference between that and obsession.


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