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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Multiplex PCR: rapid DNA cycling in a conventional thermal cycler.

Multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is a variant of PCR in which two or more target sequences are simultaneously amplified in the same reaction. In the present study we investigated the limits to which the duration of multiplex PCR steps can be shortened using the thermal cycler Gene Amp PCR system 9600 (Perkin Elmer, Oak Brook, IL). The present multiplex PCR assay simultaneously detects five different herpes viruses (HSV-1, HSV-2, VZV, CMV, and EBV) and assesses sample suitability in a single amplification round of 40 cycles. It appears that when six target sequences are simultaneously amplified in multiplex PCR, extension time is a critical parameter. Using a PCR protocol of 0 sec at 95 degrees C, 0 sec at 60 degrees C, and 0 sec at 74 degrees C with Platinum Taq DNA polymerase (Life Technologies, Gaithersburg, MD), we were able to reduce the total cycling time of the multiplex PCR assay to as little as 55 min, without affecting the yield of PCR products or the specificity of the assay. It may be necessary to optimize each specific apparatus and template, but any such optimization would be trivial.[1]


  1. Multiplex PCR: rapid DNA cycling in a conventional thermal cycler. Markoulatos, P., Siafakas, N., Katsorchis, T., Moncany, M. J. Clin. Lab. Anal. (2003) [Pubmed]
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