Thermosiphon-based PCR reactor: Experiment and modeling

Zongyuan Chen, Shizhi Qian, William R. Abrams, Daniel Malamud, Haim H. Bau

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    A self-actuated, flow-cycling polymerase chain reaction (PCR) reactor that takes advantage of buoyancy forces to continuously circulate reagents in a closed loop through various thermal zones has been constructed, tested, and modeled. The heating required for the PCR is advantageously used to induce fluid motion without the need for a pump. Flow velocities on the order of millimeters per second are readily attainable. In our preliminary proto-type, we measured a cross-sectionally averaged velocity of 2.5 mm/s and a cycle time of 104 s. The flow velocity is nearly independent of the loop's length, making the device readily scalable. Successful amplifications of 700- and 305-bp fragments of Bacillus cereus genomic DNA have been demonstrated. Since the device does not require any moving parts, it is particularly suitable for miniature systems.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)3707-3715
    Number of pages9
    JournalAnalytical Chemistry
    Issue number13
    StatePublished - Jul 1 2004

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Analytical Chemistry


    Dive into the research topics of 'Thermosiphon-based PCR reactor: Experiment and modeling'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this