Gene-chip technology and its applications
Irfan, M., Husnain, T., Tricker, P. J., Taylor, G. and Riazuddin, S. (2005) Gene-chip technology and its applications. Proceedings of the Pakistan Academy of Sciences, 42 (3). pp. 199-204. ISSN 0377-2969
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Gene Chips are finding extensive use in animal and plant science. Generally microarrays are of two kind, cDNA or oligonucleotide. cDNA microarrays were developed at Stanford University, whereas oligonucleotide were developed by Affymetrix. The construction of cDNA or oligonucleotide on a glass slide helps to compare the gene expression level of treated and control samples by labeling mRNA with green (Cy3) and red (Cy5) dyes. The hybridized gene chip emit fluorescence whose intensity and colour can be measured. RNA labeling can be done directly or indirectly. Indirect method involves amino allyle modified dUTP instead of pre-labelled nucleotide. Hybridization of gene chip generally occurs in a minimum volume possible and to ensure the hetroduplex formation, a ten fold more DNA is spotted on slide than in the solutions. A confocal or semi confocal laser technologies coupled with CCD camera are used for image acquisition. For standardization, house keeping genes are used or cDNA are spotted in gene chip that are not present in treated or control samples. Moreover, statistical analysis (image analysis) and cluster analysis softwares have been developed by Stanford University. The gene-chip technology has many applications like expression analysis, gene expression signatures (molecular phenotypes) and promoter regulatory element co-expression.