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Rotten Fish Smell in TAE Buffer - Stinky TAE (Jan/26/2011 )

I wanted to re-use the TAE buffer in a large agarose tank. I already ran three gels on it and it was normal. Usually, I re-run the buffer several times. But yesterday, when I lifted the the cap of the tank it was so stinky, like rotten fish. I already added EtBr on it and used tow and three days ago. Does anyone have an idea why it's smelling this bad? I used the same 50x TAE stock and added 5 ul EtBr (10mg/ml) for 500 ml buffer. Thank you for your help


Even if you exchange the buffer the growing film of bacteria/fungi remains more or less undisturbed...and this time I guess bacteria producing smelly metabolites are growing mainly...
If you change the buffer, then I'd carefully wipe the surfaces of the tank too, and if necessary with 70% ethanol.


yeah, it's fungus. it happens to many Tris buffers. I don't know why. My SDS-PAGE lower and upper buffers also get fungi after 3-6 months. My TBS also has the same problem. you need to use fresh.


Thank you very much guys,
Yep, I have refreshed the TAE in the tank. There is no more smell. But I will consider 70% Ethanol for my next cleaning.