Elongated Thermoelectric Coolers from Laird Thermal Systems Speed up PCR Testing


The PowerCycling PCX Elongated Series offers a robust module construction with high reliability in thermal cycling applications....

Thermal Cycling devices used for Real-Time PCR utilize thermoelectric technology to precisely manage temperature set points and ramp rates, enabling amplification of DNA segments. To improve temperature precision control in PCR devices, Laird Thermal Systems has developed an elongated series of PowerCycling PCX thermoelectric coolers. Utilizing proprietary processes and a unique module construction, the PCX Elongated Series provides high reliability and a minimal temperature gradient for PCR applications resulting in greater throughput and faster test results.

PCR requires a high number of thermal cycles to create millions of DNA strands used for medical diagnosis. Each thermal cycle consists of three steps, where the first separates the DNA strands at a high temperature of 95°C. The second step is a cool down to a melt temperature between 50 to 65°C where the biomarkers will bond to the DNA and the third stage increases the temperature to 72°C to sequence a copy of the DNA. Thermoelectric coolers are installed under the PCR wells to precisely manage these temperature setpoints to within ±0.5ºC.

Determining the optimum melt temperature of each thermal cycling stage is often a time-consuming process for laboratory technicians. By creating more temperature zones on the PCR tray, the optimal melt temp can be found. The new PCX Elongated series allows for more narrow temperature zones than standard thermoelectric coolers, providing more precise temperature control across the tray, making it easier for technicians to determine the right temperature.

The PowerCycling PCX Series features a unique robust construction with a thermally conductive “soft layer” that absorbs the mechanically induced stresses caused by thermal cycling applications. This series has been tested to meet the latest PCR industry standards without degrading in performance.

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