Increase efficiency and speed while reducing costs
Echo Liquid Handlers integrated into an Access Workstation provide a high-throughput, fully automated system, pooling oligos, assembling constructs, and spotting colonies. Whether using the Gibson Assembly® or InFusion® cloning method, tipless acoustic liquid handling reduces costs, waste, and time.
Traditional DNA assembly methods require reactions of 10-20 microliters per well. The Echo Liquid Handler can reduce the volume 100-fold, drastically cutting costs. With the ability to reliably transfer volumes as low as 2.5 nanoliters, Echo systems can extend the useful life of a primer library and eliminate the need to dilute high concentration primers, saving on storage and primer costs, and preventing dilution errors.
In addition to miniaturization, the Echo system can rapidly pool oligos or DNA fragments from library plates. Since there is no contact with fluid and no time spend changing or washing tips, the Echo system can transfer each oligo or fragment from any well of a microplate in less than a second. This can save 10-15 hours of time in a high throughput setting.
Finally, assay performance is essential. The accuracy and precision of Echo Liquid Handlers eliminate noise from assay data. This enables better detection of small changes in microbes and other organisms.
Journal of Laboratory Automation (JALA) Special Issue
Paulina Kanigowska, Yue Shen, Yijing Zheng, Susan Rosser, and Yizhi Cai
School of Biological Sciences, University of Edinburgh
Acoustic droplet ejection (ADE) technology uses focused acoustic energy to transfer nanoliter-scale liquid droplets with high precision and accuracy. This non-contact, tipless, low-volume dispensing technology minimizes the possibility of cross-contamination and reduces the costs of reagents and consumables. To date, acoustic dispensers have mainly been used in screening libraries of compounds. In this paper, we describe the first application of this powerful technology to the rapidly developing field of synthetic biology, for DNA synthesis and assembly at the nanoliter scale using a Labcyte Echo 550 acoustic dispenser. We were able to successfully downscale PCRs and the popular one-pot DNA assembly methods, Golden Gate and Gibson assemblies, from the microliter to the nanoliter scale with high assembly efficiency, which effectively cut the reagent cost by 20- to 100-fold. We envision that acoustic dispensing will become an instrumental technology in synthetic biology, in particular in the era of DNA foundries.