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ERIC Number: EJ946461
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Oct
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 21
ISSN: ISSN-0021-9584
Designing Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) Primer Multiplexes in the Forensic Laboratory
Elkins, Kelly M.
Journal of Chemical Education, v88 n10 p1422-1427 Oct 2011
The polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is a common experiment in upper-level undergraduate biochemistry, molecular biology, and forensic laboratory courses as reagents and thermocyclers have become more affordable for institutions. Typically, instructors design PCR primers to amplify the region of interest and the students prepare their samples for PCR and analyze the results. However, primers can also be designed in undergraduate laboratories with students at this level. In a course that focuses on forensic DNA molecular biology for forensic chemistry students, students have used the Applied Biosystems AmpFlSTR SGM Plus kit that amplifies DNA at eleven regions in a single test tube. It is important for forensic chemistry students to be able to design and analyze a single set of primers and, more importantly, create multiplexes of primers. This enables students to more fully understand how the primers and the kits that are routinely employed by the crime laboratories function. Creating a single set of primers does not demonstrate the extent of design and engineering inherent in creating multiplexes or adequately prepare students for research and careers in the field. The in silico method described herein uses free bioinformatics tools and results in student-designed multiplexes for Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) loci. Sample student data are shown. (Contains 4 tables.)
Division of Chemical Education, Inc and ACS Publications Division of the American Chemical Society. 1155 Sixteenth Street NW, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 800-227-5558; Tel: 202-872-4600; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A