NanoDrop: How It Works
Quickly and easily quantify samples
The technological foundation of every Thermo Scientific™ NanoDrop™ product is based upon the patented sample-retention system (Patents US6628382 and US6809826). This system allows scientists to quickly and easily quantify and assess purity of samples such as proteins and nucleic acids. Relevant for virtually every lab that deals with biological samples, NanoDrop instruments are often a favorite in the lab due to their speed, simplicity and robust performance. Try a NanoDrop instrument in your lab today for one week at no charge.
See how NanoDrop technology helps speed DNA, RNA and protein measurements with this easy-to-follow explanation
The patented sample retention system used by The Thermo Scientific™ NanoDrop™ 2000 and NanoDrop 2000c allows for the analysis of 0.5–2.0µl samples, without the need for cuvettes or capillaries.
With the arm open, a sample is pipetted directly onto the pedestal.
After the arm is closed, a sample column is formed.
The pedestal then moves to automatically adjust for an optimal path length (0.05–1mm).
When the measurement is complete, the surfaces are simply wiped with a lint-free lab wipe before going on to the next sample.
The NanoDrop 2000c model includes a built-in cuvette capability. Most common cuvettes and micro-cuvettes may be used with this instrument (8.5mm z-height and 2mm beam).
The NanoDrop 8000 model allows up to eight micro-volume samples (0.5–2.0µl) to be measured simultaneously. With the arm open, up to eight samples are pipetted directly onto the optical pedestals.
After the arm is closed, sample columns are formed and held in place by surface tension during measurement.
When measuring samples in a 96-well format on the NanoDrop 8000 Spectrophotometer, an eight-channel pipettor is used to draw 1μl samples from a microtiter plate which are then dispensed onto the eight optical measurement surfaces.
The Sample Position Illuminator keeps track of the samples to be measured
by lighting up wells from beneath the plate. This helps the user readily identify which wells to draw from for the next measurement, thus reducing fatigue and human error.
The sample position illuminator is simple to use. Prior to measurement, the
user selects the samples to be measured from the on screen position indicator (selected wells are in green).
The sample position illuminator then lights up the corresponding wells of
the plate that are to be measured:
The user then simply draws from the illuminated wells.
- Auto advance: This increases measurement throughput by automatically
lighting up the next column to be measured.
- "Cherry picking": User can select any single or multiple wells which are
then lit up by the sample position illuminator.
- Measurement limits: The user can define upper and lower concentration
(or absorbance) limits such that a well will begin to flash if the
measurement falls out of adefined range (e.g. 100ng/μl ±20ng/μl).
The NanoDrop 3300 model allows fluorescence analysis of micro-volume samples. With the arm open, a fluorescent sample is pipetted directly onto the pedestal.
After the arm is closed, a sample column is formed and held in place by surface tension during the fluorescence measurement.
Since 2001, NanoDrop products have played a pioneering role in microvolume instrumentation (sample size of 1–2µL) by developing unique UV-Vis spectrophotometers and fluorospectrometers for the life sciences market. With over 35,000 NanoDrop instruments in use today, they have accelerated the work of academic research, industrial research and QC labs focused on such diverse fields as genomics, proteomics, drug discovery, molecular diagnostics, and bio-manufacturing.
The technological foundation of every NanoDrop product is based upon the patented sample-retention system*. This system allows scientists to quickly and easily quantify and assess the purity of samples such as proteins and nucleic acids. Relevant for virtually every lab that deals with biological samples, NanoDrop instruments are often a favorite in the lab due to their speed, simplicity and robust performance.
Introduced in 2015, the third generation NanoDrop One UV-Vis spectrophotometer is built with Thermo Scientific™ Acclaro™ Sample Intelligence technology to bring you more sample knowledge, so you can make better decisions on a sample’s suitability in downstream applications.
Acclaro technology offers sample contaminant identification, corrected concentrations, and information alerts with guided troubleshooting to help you save days of troubleshooting failed experiments. This standalone instrument requires no PC for operation and uses modern connectivity (Wi-Fi, USB, ethernet, and Blutooth®) for data transfer and so much more.
*Patents US6628382 and US6809826