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Product FAQ

My agarose overlay is floating. Is this because I did not aspirate the medium completely?

Answer

Yes, this is indicative of an aspirating problem on the plaques. The agarose overlays were “floating” because the medium was not completely aspirated from the plates. The plates need to be completely dry before the agarose is placed over the cells, especially when plaques will be picked. To do this, we typically tip the plate slightly and keep going around the rim of the plate with the Pasteur pipette tip, being careful not to disturb the cell monolayer. If any medium pooling at the rims of the plates (they will be small pools) is seen, continue to aspirate. This “floating” agarose overlay problem may also result in wild-type contamination. The wild-type virus is able to migrate to other portions of the plates and contaminate recombinant plaques. Wild-type virus replicates much faster than recombinant virus, and can quickly overwhelm the recombinant virus.

Answer Id: E9468

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Product FAQ

How can I move my gene of interest from a Gateway™-adapted expression clone to a new Destination vector as I have lost the entry clone?

Answer

We would recommend performing a BP reaction with a Donor vector in order to obtain an entry clone. This entry clone can then be used in an LR reaction with the Destination vector to obtain the new expression clone.

Answer Id: E9856

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Product FAQ

What does viral infection look like in early, late, and very late stages?

Answer

Please see the description below of the different stages of viral infection:

Early
- Increased cell diameter-a 25-50% increase in the diameter of the cells may be observed.
- Increased size of cell nuclei-the nuclei may appear to "fill" the cells.

Late
- Cessation of cell growth-cells appear to stop growing when compared to a cell-only control.
- Granular appearance
- Signs of viral budding-vesicular appearance of cells.
- Viral occlusions-few cells will contain occlusion bodies, which appear as refractive crystals in the nucleus of the insect cell.
- Detachment-cells release from the dish or flask.

Very late
- Cell lysis-a few cells may fill with occluded virus, die, and burst, leaving signs of clearing in the monolayer.

Answer Id: E9400

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Product FAQ

After addition of the agarose overlay to my cells, they look like crescents or are granular. What happened?

Answer

The agarose overlay was too hot. After addition of the agarose overlay, cells should still be round and healthy.

Answer Id: E9469

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Product FAQ

Is there a way to make baculovirus plaques more visible or distinctive?

Answer

You can stain the monolayer with neutral red or MTT to make the plaques more visible. Alternatively, you can allow the plates to develop for a few days longer (2-5 days on average) at room temperature to increase the contrast in recombinant plaques. However, the plaques stained with neutral red cannot be used for plaque purification and viral amplification.

Answer Id: E9427

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Product FAQ

I’m getting mostly white/wild-type plaques instead of blue/recombinant plaques. What am I doing wrong?

Answer

This is typically an indication of poor homologous recombination. Check the plasmid/linear DNA ratio you used. If there are some blue plaques, however, expand those viruses and check for their protein. In our experience, they are correct, even if they were in relatively low abundance.

Answer Id: E9474

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Product FAQ

Can you outline the main steps of performing a plaque assay, and any suggestions when performing this assay?

Answer

Please see the method below for an outline of the main steps of performing a plaque assay:

- Plate cells at 80% confluency in a 6-well plate
- Make a serial dilution of the P1 viral stock (1-10-5) and add to cells
- Incubate for an hour at 27 degrees C
- Mix 1% melted agarose into the medium
- Remove the viral supernatant
- Overlay the cells with the medium containing agarose
- Leave the plates for 2-3 hours for agar to completely solidify
- Incubate plates for 10-14 days
- Count plaques

When performing this assay, we suggest:

- Use cells that are in excellent health, of low passage (10-20) in log-phase growth, and high viability (>95%)
- Check viral stock for sterility (free of contamination)
- Use high-quality, low melting point agarose
- The temperature of the medium with agarose is crucial-too hot, cells will die; but if too cold, it will solidify too quickly
- Wait 2-4 hours before removing the plate after overlay so that the agarose can 100% solidify
- Count plaques on a dilution plate where (1/dilution) x # of plaques = pfu/mL
e.g., if you have 50 plaques on the 10-6 plate, then you have 1(10-6) x 50 = 5 x 10e7 pfu/mL

Answer Id: E9424

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Product FAQ

Do you have a recommended single-step protocol for BP/LR recombination?

Answer

Yes, we have come up with a single-step protocol for BP/LR Clonase™ reaction (http://www.thermofisher.com/us/en/home/life-science/cloning/gateway-cloning.html#1), where DNA fragments can be cloned into Destination vectors in a single step reaction, allowing you to save time and money.

Answer Id: E9857

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Product FAQ

Do I need to purify my recombinant virus away from an uncut or non-recombinant viral DNA?

Answer

Yes. Contamination of your recombinant DNA with uncut (occ+) DNA will lead to dilution of your recombinant virus over time because, in general, uncut (wild-type, occ+) virus infects and replicates at higher efficiency than recombinant virus. Also, initiating expression studies with a pure, single virus population will ensure reproducible results.

Answer Id: E9401

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Product FAQ

How clean must my DNA be to use in a Gateway™ cloning reaction?

Answer

Mini-prep (alkaline lysis) DNA preparations work well in Gateway™ cloning reactions. It is important that the procedure remove contaminating RNA for accurate quantification. Plasmid DNA purified with our S.N.A.P.™ nucleic acid purification kits, ChargeSwitch™ kits, or PureLink™ kits are recommended.

Answer Id: E3204

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Product FAQ

What is the smallest fragment that can be used in a Gateway™ reaction?

Answer

The smallest size we have recombined is a 70 bp piece of DNA located between the att sites. Very small pieces are difficult to clone since they negatively influence the topology of the recombination reaction.

Answer Id: E3198

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Product FAQ

What might cause plates to turn blue along with blue plaques?

Answer

There are a few things that can turn plates blue:

- Too much virus when plating. Try a higher dilution.
- Cells are being singed when plated with hot melted agarose. This lyses the cells and releases lacZ into the agarose, turning it blue. Double-check plating temperatures. If plates are too wet, the blue can diffuse.

Answer Id: E9470

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Product FAQ

To propagate more recombinant virus stock, what MOI should I use and when should I harvest the virus?

Answer

When propagating virus stock, use a low MOI (0.03-0.1) in order to avoid effects of defective interfering particles (DIPs). A low MOI, which ensures no more than 1 virion per cell, prevents the amplification of DIPs. A harvest time based on 15% cell viability is appropriate. NOTE: DIPs are nearly normal virus capsids containing genomes that are defective and are unable to undergo successful replication. While this "particle" is not infectious by itself, it can replicate when co-infected with normal virion, or with some other types of DI particles.

Answer Id: E9428

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Product FAQ

What is the purpose of the Proteinase K step following a Gateway™ LR Recombination reaction, and is it critical to the results?

Answer

When the LR reaction is complete, the reaction is stopped with Proteinase K and transformed into E. coli resulting in an expression clone containing a gene of interest. A typical LR reaction followed by Proteinase K treatment yields about 35,000 to 150,000 colonies per 20ul reaction. Without the Proteinase K treatment, up to a 10 fold reduction in the number of colonies can be observed. Despite this reduction, there are often still enough colonies containing the gene of interest to proceed with your experiment, so the Proteinase K step can be left out after the LR reaction is complete if necessary.

Answer Id: E4230

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Product FAQ

What has happened when I see blue colonies? How about colonies which are blue in the center and white on the edges?

Answer

In the case of a blue colony, the E. coli has the bacmid and the plasmid in it, allowing the cells to survive the selection process. However, because the transposition has not occurred, the LacZ gene is not disrupted. For bulls-eye colonies, this indicates that the transposition took place when the colony was growing. Re-streaking for an isolated clone from the white portion of the mixed colony should yield some colonies where transposition occurred.

Answer Id: E9475

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