Agarose gel electrophoresis

Agarose gel electrophoresis is a method of gel electrophoresis used in biochemistry, molecular biology, genetics, and clinical chemistry to separate a mixed population of macromolecules such as DNA or proteins in a matrix of agarose, one of the two main components of agar. The proteins may be separated by charge and/or size (isoelectric focusing agarose electrophoresis is essentially size independent), and the DNA and RNA fragments by length. Biomolecules are separated by applying an electric field to move the charged molecules through an agarose matrix, and the biomolecules are separated by size in the agarose gel matrix. Agarose gel is easy to cast, has relatively fewer charged groups, and is particularly suitable for separating DNA of size range most often encountered in laboratories, which accounts for the popularity of its use. The separated DNA may be viewed with stain, most commonly under UV light, and the DNA fragments can be extracted from the gel with relative ease. Most agarose gels used are between 0.7–2% dissolved in a suitable electrophoresis buffer.


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