Dictionary > Primer extension

Primer extension

Definition
noun
A method that uses the enzyme Reverse Transcriptase (RNA-dependent DNA polymerase) to determine the 5′-untranslated region of specific mRNA molecule
Supplement
Primer extension is a laboratory technique that makes use of the enzyme reverse transcriptase (or the RNA-dependent DNA polymerase). It was discovered by Howard Temin and David Baltimore in 1970. It is used for measuring the amount of RNA and for mapping the 5’ends of RNA. It is also used to create cDNA libraries from mRNA. It is also for the detection of transcripts produced during in vitro transcription and for mapping the replication initiation point.1
The primer extension is an alternative method to nuclease protection assay (e.g. S1 nuclease mapping) when wanting to quantify and map RNA transcripts. Both of them are capable of determining where mRNA starts and an estimate of the concentration of a transcript based on the intensity of the transcript band from autoradiograph.
The advantage of primer extension method is that there is no probe used and it is simple and straight forward. The drawback is the reverse transcriptase that may encounter regions of RNA that can pause or terminate synthesis. 1
See also:

  • primer
  • mRNA
  • cDNA
  • reverse transcriptase
  • nuclease protection assay

Reference(s):

1Alice Mumbey-Wafula. 20 February 2004. Primer extension, and nuclease si mapping. – Biology. Biochemistry Seminar.


You will also like...

Crossing Over and Genetic Diversity
Inheritance and Probability

Gregor Mendel, an Austrian monk, is most famous in this field for his study of the phenotype of pea plants, including ..

Gene Pool and Speciation
The Gene Pool and Population Genetics

According to Charles Darwin's theory of natural selection, preferable genes are favored by nature in the gene pool, and ..

Human gastrointestinal tract
Human Biology – Food and Digestion

This tutorial recognizes the importance of food as a source of energy that will fuel many biological processes. A good d..

IQ, Creativity and Learning
IQ, Creativity and Learning

Human intelligence provided the means to utilize abstract ideas and implement reasoning. This tutorial takes a further l..

Regulation of Biological Systems
Regulation of Biological Systems

Regulation of Biological Systems tutorials are focused on the modulation of biological systems from cell to population l..

Freshwater Ecology
Freshwater Ecology

Freshwater ecology focuses on the relations of aquatic organisms to their freshwater habitats. There are two forms of co..