Application of Electrophoresis

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Electrophoresis Uses

Electrophoresis is known as the movement of the dispersed or colloidal particles that are suspended in a given fluid because of their interactions with the electric field that is uniform partially. Electrophoresis process of the positively charged particles called cations is often referred to as cataphoresis. On the other hand, the electrophoresis of the negatively charged particles called anions is referred to as anaphoresis. It is caused due to the presence of an interface which is charged and lies between the surface of the particle and the surrounding fluid. It makes for the basis for different analytical techniques that are used in Chemistry to separate the molecules according to their charges, size, or binding affinity.


Electrophoresis process is also used in the laboratories for separating the macromolecules depending on their size. This technique includes the application of a negative charge so that the proteins would move towards the positive charge. Electrophoresis is also widely used in the analysis of DNA, RNA and different proteins. We will discuss the electrophoresis uses and the application of electrophoresis in chemistry in this article.


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Application of Electrophoresis in DNA Analysis and DNA Fragmentation

Amongst the most important applications of the process of electrophoresis is in the analysis of DNA analysis the studying of DNA fragments. DNA is known for the negative charge consistency that it holds and it is affected due to the presence of the electrical current. When pressure is exerted on it by the electric field, DNA starts to break down into small and large fragments. This happens because different kinds of DNA fragments get affected by the current on different scales. A test medium like an agarose gel or an acrylamide gel is used for freezing the separated fragments of a particular DNA strand. The electric field is then removed and the study of these fragments is carried out.


Application of Electrophoresis in Protein Detection

A type of electrophoresis known as immunoelectrophoresis is common and used for analyzing several kinds of proteins existence and how they behave chemically in different environments. When irregular molecules of proteins are formed they get triggered because of various medical conditions like multiple sclerosis, kidney failures and even different kinds of cancers. The irregular proteins are detected by the method of electrophoresis on the urine or blood samples and frequently checking its results for any kind of deviations from standard forms and amounts of the protein. Immunoelectrophoresis is also used for the detection of specific proteins which are called immunoglobulins.


Application of Electrophoresis for Testing Antibodies

Electrophoresis plays a variety of essential functions when it comes to the testing of antibiotics.

The most common applications of the process of electrophoresis in this field are the testing of antibiotics to check their purity. Electrophoresis is used in a solution that consists of the antibiotic to be tested in the form of a paper strip. This strip is impregnated with a capillary or the antibiotic which is filled with the drug.


Electrophoresis is also used for determining the strength of the antibiotic having a vital importance in regards to administering the exact dosages. Also, the antibiotic research field has a common ground along with the genetic testing field. Hence, electrophoresis also helps for discovering the genes which tend to indicate the resistance to a specific kind of antibiotics.

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

1. How Does Electrophoresis Work?

Ans: Electrophoresis process is a method that uses an electric field for separating the charged particles like DNA and many other macromolecules such as RNA and proteins, depending on their size and charge. This is carried out by using an electrodes pair that generate an electrode potential E. This helps in the migration of the charged particles towards their respective poles. The electrophoresis process is also useful in many applications such as separating the nucleic acids and proteins, separating the DNA fragments, visualizing the molecular makers, and checking the quality and quantity of the genomic DNA.

2. What is the Use of Electrophoresis?

Ans: Electrophoresis is a process that allows the separation of the charged molecules depending on their charge and size on a gel with the help of a  polyacrylamide gel or a meshwork Liem agarose gel. This is very helpful to us since it helps us in determining the properties of the molecules that are being separated. Consider, for example, the separation of the DNA strands allows for the measurement of their sizes. It also helps in the visualization of the presence of a specific molecule of interest, for example, a specific type of the DNA molecule or a specific kind of a protein.

3. What is the Use of the Agarose Gel Electrophoresis?

Ans: Gel electrophoresis refers to the method for separating the biomolecules. It makes use of a property which is called sieving which tends to depend on the charge, shape and weight of the molecule that has to be separated. For separating the different types of molecules, different types of gels get prepared, for example, an agarose gel for the separation of the molecules of DNA and RNA. Depending on the different sizes, the gel concentrations are either increased or decreased. Hence, for resolving the smaller samples of DNA and RNA, higher concentrations of the agarose gels have to be made. In case we wish to differentiate between the molecules that are smaller or bigger by a few units of the nucleotides, the concentration and the size of the gels are to be increased when there are simple sequence repeat markers. Nucleotides, on the other hand, tend to migrate from the negative to the positive charge because of the negative charges.