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Genetics

What is the function of EDTA in DNA extraction?

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Wiki User
2012-08-09 18:11:09

EDTA is a chelating agent and has great affinity with matel ions

and Mg-ion present in DNase as a cofactor and responsible for DNase

action that degrade the DNA,here EDTA bind with Mg-ion and nullyfy

the action of DNase.

The nuclear envelope normally protects the DNA from digestion by

nucleases. Nuclear envelope is the membrane that surrounds the

nucleus and prevents the exposure of its contents such as the DNA

to the contents of cytoplasm. In the process of DNA extraction, we

need to break down the nuclear envelope in order to access the DNA.

This would expose the DNA to nucleases and if we don't deactivate

these enzymes, they will cut and damage the DNA. Nucleases need

divalent cations such as Mg2+ to function. In order to deactivate

these enzymes we use EDTA which stands for

Ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid to our sample tissue. EDTA has four

carboxyl groups ( -COOH). In the alkaline condition of the buffer,

EDTA becomes negatively charged. The EDTA ions then form covalent

bonds with the divalent cations and prevent them from reacting with

nucleases. As a result, the enzymes are deactivated and will no

longer cause a threat to the DNA.


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