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Primer Annealing Temperatures


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24 replies to this topic

#1 praveen921

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 05:54 AM

hello,

I have two different annealing temperatures for my primers (59 and 55). At what annealing temperature should i set when in the PCR when using this primer set ?

Thanks for the help

Edited by praveen921, 21 August 2012 - 05:55 AM.


#2 ascacioc

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 12:46 PM

I use this site to calculate the Tm :
http://www.idtdna.co...er/Default.aspx
There are many algorithms around leading to different results. With the Tms determined here, I take the average - 5 oC for the annealing when I am using Taq polymerase (30 sec anealling step)
Take care that if you have overhangs (additional sequences you want to add to your sequence through PCR) you need to calculate Tm only for the matching part of the primers. For this purpose I use Phusion: higher Tm of both primers (matching sequence) + 5°C; touch down -0.7°C / cycle; 15 sec annealing step; this for 14 steps followed by another 6 steps for which you have: lower Tm of both primers (calculate Tm for full sequence) (15 sec per step)



Andreea

#3 phage434

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Posted 21 August 2012 - 06:26 PM

Too complex for me. I anneal at 55C.

#4 Ameya P

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 08:34 AM

Start with 55, if the product in unspecific increase annealing temperature by 2 degrees at a time. that should work :)

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#5 phage434

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 09:12 AM

Step 1: anneal at 55
Step 2: (optional) do a gradient PCR annealing from 50-68
Step 3: Throw primers away, redesign primers.

Life is too short to deal with marginal primers.

#6 Trof

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 10:19 AM

I usually do..
Step 1: anneal at 60
Step 2: 5% DMSO
Step 3: forgot.. long time ago Posted Image

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#7 ascacioc

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 01:51 PM

why redesign primers? those are perfectly good primers. I did a PCR once with primers one at 46 and the other one at 71 (long story, but I couldn't design them better no matter what I did, and I struggled quite a lot). Worked perfectly....but I'm the one with a too complicated PCR program Posted Image Designing primers with the same annealing temperature is so old-fashioned. What the PCR cyclers can do nowadays for you together with what we know about PCR can easily solve the problem of the PCR with different annealing temperatures. And btw: 4 degrees is nothing.

I am also all for the gradient annealing suggested by phage434. However, not all the labs invest in such a function of the PCR machine...(my current lab surely didn't invest in this option no matter how many times I cried for itPosted Image ) But if your PCR machine can do gradient or touch-down: learn how to use them, they will save your life.

Andreea

#8 Trof

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 02:47 PM

@ascacioc
Could you share the program you then used to get primers to work? I never violated the recomended 2 deg difference, even when I had some pretty awfull sequences too (but I work on nonextreme GC% templates), so seeing different approach would be interesting. Thanks.

Our country has a serious deficiency in lighthouses. I assume the main reason is that we have no sea.

I never trust anything that can't be doubted.

'Normal' is a dryer setting. - Elizabeth Moon


#9 ascacioc

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 03:06 PM

I will post here the entire Phusion protocol I am using from mastermix to agarose gel:
1. Setup on ice in a 0.2 mL tube the mastermix for PCR according to the table
below. Thaw all non-enzyme components at RT, mix by short vortex and collect
by short centrifugation.
mastermix:
(75 μL; split into 6x 12.5 μL)
-plasmid template
(sequencing or column grade
plasmid preparation)
x μL (5 ng / 1 kb plasmid template)
-MilliQ H2O
(PCR quality = autoclaved in a bottle that was rinsed several times with MilliQ because you never know who made their Mn/Mg salt solution in that bottle before you; once I have a bottle I can trust, I always reuse the same bottle for preparing PCR water all the time)
47.75 μL - x μL of plasmid template
-5x HF buffer 15 μL
(final 1x)
-X_fwd primer
(5 μM)
6 μL
(final 400 nM)
-X_rev primer
(5 μM)
6 μL
(final 400 nM)
-dNTP-mix
(10 mM each)
1.5 μL
(final 0.2 mM each nucleotide)
-Phusion
(2 U/μL)
0.75 μL
(final 0.02 U/μL)

2. Split the mastermix into 6x 12.5 μL and run all samples in a PCR cycler using
a 10°C temperature gradient (use columns: 1, 4, 6, 7, 9, 12; use the cycler
option menu to calculate the corresponding temperatures). (this is for the Eppendorf PCR machine; the one for 96 samples with gradient included; check for your own machine how it works)

PCR program ('' means sec and ' means min):
(20 cycles; 105°C (works also with 99°C) heated lid and set to PAUSE)
ID – initial denaturation 30’’ 98°C
D – denaturation 5’’ 98°C
A – annealing 15’’ = higher Tm of both primers + 5°C;
gradient +/-5°C;
touch down -0.7°C / cycle
(calculate Tm for matching sequence)
http://eu.idtdna.com...er/Default.aspx
E – extension 15’’ /1 kb 72°C
go back to step 2 and repeat 13 times
D – denaturation 5’’ 98°C
A – annealing 15’’ = lower Tm of both primers
(calculate Tm for full sequence)
http://eu.idtdna.com...er/Default.aspx
E – extension 15’’ / 1 kb 72°C
FE – final extension 3’ 72°C go back to step 5 and repeat 5 times
S – storage 8°C
3. Load all samples on a 0.8 % SB agarose-gel (7.5 V/cm; 40 min) (for me SB buffer for running agaroses is the ideal buffer; TAE is an ancient buffer developed because they did not know better than Tris at those times. But this is a completely different story :). Check for optimal annealing temperature among your 6 samples and repeat PCR with that temperature if more product is needed.

BTW: when repeating PCR never use more than 20 uL per 200 uL tube.

This is called Phusion-never fail PCR and was developed by my supervisor during master thesis, Dr. Alexander Schenk. Enjoy you PCRs :)

Andreea

#10 ascacioc

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Posted 23 August 2012 - 03:10 PM

Little note: since in my current lab I do not have a gradient PCR machine, I skip the gradient and it still works; just use the middle temperatures as described in the protocol. Still my PCR never failed:)

#11 praveen921

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Posted 24 August 2012 - 12:58 AM

Thanks for all the ideas guys, I ran a gradient and the primer set worked fine at an annealing temp of 60C

#12 Trof

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Posted 24 August 2012 - 07:35 AM

Another note: Back in the days when I was still trying to optimise each reaction's Ta, I sometimes run gradient on certain new assays, 55 - 65 Ct, with my hotstart mastermix (HotStarTaq MM from Qiagen), and the result always was that products from all temperatures were equally (very) bright. This happened most of the time I tried the gradient. So I generaly stopped doing that.
Qiagen has a proprietary mix, that often worked for my colleagues when no other polymerase would (not even AmpliTaq Gold), so sometimes just good polymerase can spare you a lot of optimizing time.

Our country has a serious deficiency in lighthouses. I assume the main reason is that we have no sea.

I never trust anything that can't be doubted.

'Normal' is a dryer setting. - Elizabeth Moon


#13 ascacioc

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Posted 24 August 2012 - 07:50 AM

Actually in the case of Qiagen is not the polymerase but the simple buffer. Their recipe is the best one. It is a mixture of Tris and MgCl2 at the certain pH/conc that makes that buffer indeed the best Taq buffer on the market (I tested ~10 of them). The funny thing is that the polymerase is the same from all companies and if you change them in the buffer from Qiagen, they will work as well as the one from Qiagen. In my master thesis I purified my own Taq polymerase (in one purification I got 40 mL of what Qiagen sells in 25 uL aliquots) and once we figured out the right buffer recipe, my entire lab used this forever and ever (we did a lot of PCRs; alone I was using 200 uL of Taq polymerase per week).

Depending on the purpose of the PCR, Phusion is far better in amplification than Taq (although more expensive) because of increased processivity due to the extra ssDNA binding domain. On top, Phusion does not make as many errors as Taq if you want to PCR inserts for cloning. And btw for large scale applications is worth cloning Phusion polymerase and purify it (1 L culture leads to 20-30 mL of polymerase after one His-affinity purification step); Phusion is actually Pfu + a ssDNA binding domain from an archea (check patent to see which one)

Andreea

#14 phage434

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Posted 24 August 2012 - 12:35 PM

So, what's the magic Qiagen buffer recipe? Openwetware wants to know.

#15 ascacioc

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Posted 25 August 2012 - 11:38 AM

Unfortunatelly (even though with my entire opensource-science heart I would love to) I cannot give you those recipes because I was working in a company at that moment Posted Image (confidentiality contract blah-blah) But I can tell you how we identified the candidates and people can also try:
-checked patents (+a couple of Chinese companies who stole recepies from American/European companies) + all known PCR buffer recipies --> extensive google-ing
-did a PCR mastermix/pro buffer (water, dNTPs, buffer, primers, template) with a template of ~1000 bp with normal amount of GC without the polymerase; divided it in 10 tubes (10 uL) each; dilution series of the inhouse purified Taq polymerase 3-5 times diluted in between steps; set up a PCR for 10 steps and ran gels to compare the different buffers (including the commercial Qiagen); this would be a test for processivity since you will get a band only for the first 2-4 dilutions in the series.
-take the best 3 (including Qiagen buffer) from above and do an amplification and cloning and sequence 10 clones each per buffer to get the best fidelity out of the 3 chosen buffers

We did this for both Taq and Phusion and we got the buffers that lead to the same results as the commercial ones.

I know this does not help too much, but maybe there is somebody out here, reading this post and would try the same thing and would be able to post the recipes. I know that I would try the same approach again when I have my own lab (10 years from now Posted Image ) and share the recipies with the world.

Andreea




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