SDS Acrylamide Gel Equipement
Posted 23 May 2011 - 08:46 AM
I am in charge of purchasing new equipment for my lab, and we are in need of an SDS-Page apparatus. Currently we have an electrophoresis voltage apparatus (not sure what technical name is), but I need to purchase pre-cast gels and a vertical electrophoresis cell (the item that gels are placed in). What are your suggestions as to which company to purchase these items from? Right now I am thinking about using BioRad, just because I am familiar with their products. If you have a company that you feel provides superior products (in this area), I would love to hear your thoughts on the matter. I will not be using gels terribly often, likely no more than 30-40/year. With such a low quantity, do you think that it would be worth making the gels myself. If so, which ideal system and materials will I need?
Posted 24 May 2011 - 06:36 PM
I hate the biorad system, it truely is a pain to work with, the gels are too small to get good resolution of similar size bands, they make you buy their special plates if you want different thickness gels and the transfer tanks are somewhat sub-optimal IMO. To be fair, I should add that they are very easy to set up and quick to run (1h), which larger gels (2-3h) are not.
I would try Hoeffer and/or Owl PAGE systems. The down side to these is that they are harder to set up. On the plus side, they are a good size for getting resolution, you can buy a wide range of spacer sizes, they come with good plate based transfer tanks and the Hoeffer at least, will take Invitogen pre-cast gels at a pinch.
Edited by bob1, 24 May 2011 - 06:40 PM.
Posted 26 May 2011 - 05:45 AM
Edited by proteaMatt, 26 May 2011 - 05:52 AM.
Posted 27 May 2011 - 10:12 AM
There are three major gel boxes out there - Biorad, Invitrogen, and Hoofer, each with its pros and cons. The Biorad box is probably the most popular, but its downside can be that it leaks during runs. This can be avoided by using precast gels that require the gaskets to be reversed (like ProteaGels). The Invitrogen unit is probably the second most popular, it tends to take longer to run and requires more buffer. I have never used Hoofer's box. If you would like to pour your own gels that would be the cheapest route. You would need to get empty cassettes, gel solution and APS and TEMED. Precast gels are really convenient but can be quite a bit more expensive, especially if you purchase them from Biorad or Invitrogen. You can find lesser known brands of precast gels (like Protea for example) out there that will fit the Invitrogen and Biorad boxes that are similar in quality and much cheaper.
I ended up going with BioRad, not because I prefer it over the other brands but it turns out we had about $1400 of biorad equipment stowed away in storage that the other members had forgotten about! Still the suggestion of cheaper precast gels is very useful, I was unaware that there were alternatives. Thank you!