Poly(ethyleneoxide) for high resolution and high-speed separation of DNA by capillary electrophoresis

Huan Tsung Chang, Edward S. Yeung*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal Article peer-review

112 Scopus citations


Capillary electrophoresis (CE) with polyacrylamide gels has already been demonstrated to allow single-base resolution of single-stranded DNA. However, linear polyacrylamide is not an ideal matrix because of a high viscosity and difficulties in preparing the polymer with well defined pore sizes. Alternatively, poly(ethyleneoxide) (PEO) with a large range of molecular masses from 300 000 to 8 000 000 is available commercially. In addition, it is easy to prepare homogeneous solutions to provide highly reproducible separation performance with sufficient resolution. Single-base resolution of double-stranded DNA between 123 and 124 base pairs can be achieved by the use of homogeneous matrices prepared from PEO (2.5% Mr 8 000 000), and even better resolution is achieved by using mixed polymer matrices. With further work, it should be possible to change the fractions and the total amounts of polymers to achieve even higher resolution for different samples with different size ranges of fragments. Another advantage of mixed polymer matrices is that relatively high resolution can be obtained while maintaining a relatively low viscosity compared to linear polyacrylamide with identical contents of formamide and urea, which makes it easier to fill these matrices into small capillaries.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)113-123
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Chromatography B: Biomedical Sciences and Applications
Issue number1
StatePublished - 07 07 1995
Externally publishedYes


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