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Electrophoresis Imaging - (May/13/2014 )

Studied biology 30 years ago and recently returned to the discipline.  Seeking the appropriate terminology and processes of the imaging segment.  Attached please find images.  What is the name of the refrigerator like device with the camera on the top.  Where can one find reading on the interpretation of the image below.  Much thanks for your attention as I await a reply.

Attached Image

Attached Image

-Phil Pense-

The "refrigerator" is usually referred to as a "gel-doc" (short for gel documentation system).


Interpretation of gels depends a bit on what you are doing, so there may or may not be literature available that will tell you what you are looking at.  However, in general electrophoresis separates DNA (or RNA) bands based on size/molecular weight.  Smaller bands migrate faster as their progress through the gel is not hindered as much by the pores that form in the gel matrix.  The ladder (also known as molecular weight marker) you are pointing at in the image tells you roughly how big your other bands are, as the molecular mass of the bands should be defined for the ladder.  There are additional complications if you are dealing with things like genomic DNA or plasmids, but you can re-post for more information on those.


Check out Sambrook et al.  Molecular Cloning:a laboratory manual.