TITLE: [DIY Microliter Fluorometer]
[As any budding biohacker eventually figures out, processes such as PCR and DNA sequencing are subject to the GIGO principle: Garbage-In-Garbage-Out. For example, if the starting DNA concentration in your sample is too low, the results of a PCR or sequencing run will be crap, or not very informative. That’s why it’s useful to measure the DNA concentration in your sample before anything else. One way to do this is to measure the level of fluorescence when you mix your sample with a DNA dye. The device to do this measurement is called a fluorometer. Such devices are relatively simple, but can be expensive when bought commercially. That means: DIY time! The idea is to use LEDs (to excite the dye) and a sensitive light sensor (to measure the fluorescence). The sample volume needed should be low (microliters).]
- [Light sensor - check, I’ll bring two TSL235R and two TSL2591 sensors
- LEDs - check, I’ll bring a few blue LEDs with known suitable emission spectra
- optical filter - somewhat check, I’ll bring a small square of a Knight Optical filter and a sample set of photography filters
- possibly other optical elements like lenses?
- DNA dye - check, I’ll bring some GelGreen
- DNA samples - check, I’ll bring some DNA ladders w/o loading dye that we can use to make dilution series with known DNA concentrations
- sensor/sample holder contraption thingy
- Microliter pipettes + tips - check]
LINKS TO MORE INFORMATION
Please add constructive feedback, suggestions, offers of equipment or skills, and gestures of wild enthusiasm as replies below. Thanks!