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BMC Biotechnol. 2009 Apr 23;9:39. doi: 10.1186/1472-6750-9-39.

A modified and automated version of the 'Fluorimetric Detection of Alkaline DNA Unwinding' method to quantify formation and repair of DNA strand breaks.

Author information

  • 1Lehrstuhl Molekulare Toxikologie, Fachbereich Biologie, Universität Konstanz, Konstanz, Germany. maria.moreno-villanueva@uni-konstanz.de

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Formation and repair of DNA single-strand breaks are important parameters in the assessment of DNA damage and repair occurring in live cells. The 'Fluorimetric Detection of Alkaline DNA Unwinding (FADU)' method [Birnboim HC, Jevcak JJ. Cancer Res (1981) 41:1889-1892] is a sensitive procedure to quantify DNA strand breaks, yet it is very tedious to perform.

RESULTS:

In order (i) to render the FADU assay more convenient and robust, (ii) to increase throughput, and (iii) to reduce the number of cells needed, we have established a modified assay version that is largely automated and is based on the use of a liquid handling device. The assay is operated in a 96-well format, thus greatly increasing throughput. The number of cells required has been reduced to less than 10,000 per data point. The threshold for detection of X-ray-induced DNA strand breaks is 0.13 Gy. The total assay time required for a typical experiment to assess DNA strand break repair is 4-5 hours.

CONCLUSION:

We have established a robust and convenient method measuring of formation and repair of DNA single-strand breaks in live cells. While the sensitivity of our method is comparable to current assays, throughput is massively increased while operator time is decreased.

PMID:
19389244
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2679009
Free PMC Article

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