Clontech, a Takara Bio Company now has the largest available selection of premium quality Total and poly A+ RNAs of any vendor. Potential applications for these RNA samples are numerous including cDNA cloning, quantitative PCR protocols, generation of libraries and northern blotting. As one of the BD Premium RNA product range, the quality of these RNA samples is supposed to be exceptional. The RNA samples are prepared using proprietary modifications of relatively standard protocols: RNA is purified using guanidium thiocyanate and poly A+ RNA is selected for with two oligo(dT)-cellulose purification steps. RNA preparations are submitted to quality control procedures to verify that RNA is intact, full-length and not contaminated with genomic DNA.
The list of available RNA preparations is extensive (full details can be downloaded here). Many different RNA preparations are available from human, human fetal, tumor, mouse and rat tissues and smaller list of RNA are available from cow, chicken, drosophila, rabbit and yeast. Many tissue RNAs can be purchased as either total RNA or poly A+ RNA preps, depending upon your downstream application. RNAs for some tissues, such as human brain and stomach, are also available from different regions within the tissue. Finally, RNAs from some cell lines, including human lines, can be obtained.
I initially investigated the Clontech RNA preparations because I needed to RT-PCR clone a human channel protein. In the past I have cloned genes using RNA that I purified from cell lines. With this gene however the relatively low abundance of the channel and the gene length (~3 kb) all persuaded me to expedite the process as much as possible. ‘Best’ quality RNA would certainly help! The RNA was reasonably priced for 50 µg of total RNA (however different samples may cost more). Most importantly though, with relatively little effort, the full-length gene was amplified from cDNA generated using the RNA. A colleague also needed to amplify a different channel protein from the same tissue and using the same BD RNA he was also successful. Although I have not tried all the samples nor attempted all the possible applications of the RNA (and almost certainly never will) if all the preps are of the same quality as this one then I will definitely be considering them for future projects.
Like many things in life sciences today there are many alternative methods to get to an end point. If you are not experienced with RNA isolation, don’t have easy access to a particular tissue (especially human) or just want to begin with excellent materials then these RNA preparations are a good starting point. On the other hand, if you do have access to particular tissues and have experience with RNA then you may not require them. I was certainly very happy with the quality of the RNA I used and I think it got me to my end point, a cloned channel protein, rapidly.
Peter Haggie, Ph.D.
University of California, San Francisco
Premium RNA (Clontech, a Takara Bio Company)
Excellent quality RNA at a reasonable price that almost certainly expedited my cloning process
This product may not be for everyone, a scientist with extensive experience of RNA and ready access to the tissue they require will not need it
The Bottom Line
A high quality product for the occasional RNA user or a scientist requiring RNA from a particular origin