In the past, the extraction and purification of nucleic acids had been a complicated, time-, and labor-intensive process. Manual extraction of nucleic acids requires repeated centrifugation steps followed by removal of supernatants and, depending on the type of specimen, additional mechanical treatment, e.g., for the lysis of blood cells, organ biopsies, or bacterial and fungal cell walls. In addition, many extraction methods suffer from the presence of strong inhibitors that are present in different clinical specimens, such as sera and stool, and may lead to false-negative results. Furthermore, many manual protocols rely on the use of toxic chemicals, such as guanidinium thiocyanate or phenol-chloroform.

Robotic workstations for the extraction and purification of nucleic acids should fulfill a true walk-away automation. The technology should allow a high throughput of samples; the yield, purity, reproducibility, and scalability of the RNA and DNA as well as the speed, accuracy, and reliability of the assay should be maximal, whereas the risk of cross-contamination must be minimal.

Here we give an overview of commercially available workstations for an automated extraction of nucleic acids.

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Getting Started With Dumbbells

Getting Started With Dumbbells

The use of dumbbells gives you a much more comprehensive strengthening effect because the workout engages your stabilizer muscles, in addition to the muscle you may be pin-pointing. Without all of the belts and artificial stabilizers of a machine, you also engage your core muscles, which are your body's natural stabilizers.

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