Denatured alcohol (ethanol) OK for standard molecular biology solutions?

Paul Wary paul_wary at
Mon Oct 18 08:23:25 EST 2004


We had non-denatured alcohol (ca. 99 %, pro analysi) and denatured
alcohol (ca. 99 % with around 1 % methylethylketone, pro analysi) in
our lab. We were running out of non-denatured alcohol, and I asked one
my lab mates whether I can use the denatured alcohol for making
standard molecular biology/biochemistry solutions (such as certain
buffers for precipitation or washing of nucleic acids, washing
solution for silver staining of protein gels).
He said no, I would have to use non-denatured alcohol but couldn't
give me a reason for that. I can't think of a reason why 1 %
methylethylketone would be a problem for the  uses of alcohol
mentioned above.
Can you tell me when denatured alcohol can be used for standard
procedures of molecular biology and biochemistry, when not, and why?


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