Country: United States
Date: July 2008
What is a DNA pellet? How can one define this term
logically and scientifically?
This refers to the mass of DNA at the bottom of the centrifuge tube after
you do a DNA extraction. DNA is insoluble in ethanol, so when you add
ethanol to a mixture containing DNA, the DNA will precipitate in the
ethanol. Centrifuging will leave a 'pellet' of DNA.
Hope this helps,
I am assuming you are extracting DNA and it wants you to pellet the DNA.
One molecule of DNA is too small to see with the even the most powerful
microscope. In order to see it you need millions of strands wrapped
together. If you then spin this in a centrifuge it will form a visible mass
in the bottom of the tube. It will appear as a white dot in the bottom of
the tube, also known as a pellet.
A DNA pellet is a clump of DNA that has been precipitated from an aquaeous
solution by the addition of alcohol.
Ron Baker, Ph.D.
Click here to return to the Molecular Biology Archives
Update: June 2012