Analysis of clinically relevant, diagnostic DNA by capillary zone and double-gradient gel slab electrophoresis

Pier Giorgio Righetti, Cecilia Gelfi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A number of applications of capillary zone electrophoresis (CZE) in sieving liquid polymers (notably linear polyacrylamides and cellulose) for the analysis of polymerase chain reaction products of clinically relevant, diagnostic DNA, are reviewed here. The fields covered are human genetics, quantitative gene dosage, microbiology and virology, forensic medicine and therapeutic DNA (notably antisense nucleotides). Some unique, novel developments are highlighted, such as (a) non-isocratic CZE, i,e., temperature-programmed CZE for detection of DNA point mutations and (b) the synthesis of novel N-substituted acrylamides, offering extreme resistance to alkaline hydrolysis, coupled with high hydrophilicity. In the field of denaturing gradient gel electrophoresis (DGGE), as routinely performed in gel slabs, a novel methodology is described, i.e., double-gradient DGGE. In this technique, two gradients are simultaneously applied along the migration direction; a chemical denaturing gradient, for partially unwinding homo- and hetero-duplexes of DNA and a porosity gradient, for re-compacting diffuse bands melting over a broader range of denaturing conditions. Both the CZE and the slab gel methodologies, with the latest developments described in this review, appear to be promising tools for screening diagnostic DNA.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)97-112
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Chromatography A
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - May 8 1998


  • DNA
  • Genetic disorders
  • Reviews

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry


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