Many genetic variants have been shown to have allele-dependent effects on gene expression. Quantitation of gene expression by QPCR has become a highly used methodology in human genetics and genomics. In this regard, a central issue has been the existence of primers that guarantee in advance a high probability of a successful amplification.
A recent paper in Nucleic Acids Research from the Center for Computational and Integrative Biology at the Massachusetts General Hospital describes the current state of the PrimerBank database. It is a freely available resource that provides an extensive catalogue of well-designed primers for QPCR. More than 300.000 primers for human and mouse genes are reported and more than 26.000 primers for mouse genes have been experimentally validated.
Users can search for primers using several parameters: GenBank accession number, NCBI protein accession number, NCBI gene ID, PrimerBank ID, NCBI gene symbol or keyword (gene description). Detailed info about primers and targeted regions are returned to each query. Registered users can also submit additional primers.
A broad use of PrimerBank, and other similar databases, will facilitate the execution and replication of targeted gene expression experiments.
"We would like to conduct a comparable validation study on human primers in the future and to expand coverage to include significant splice isoforms".
Professor Brian Seed, PhD
Harvard Medical School
Spandidos A, Wang X, Wang H, Seed B.
PrimerBank: a resource of human and mouse PCR primer pairs for gene expression detection and quantification.
Nucleic Acids Res. 2010 Jan;38(Database issue):D792-9. (Freely available full text)
Prof. Dr. Diego A. Forero, MD, PhDEditor, hum-molgen.org
Message posted by: Diego Forero