Digital PCR – getting the most out of difficult clinical samples

Frank McCaughan
Medical Research Council, United Kingdom

We use digital PCR to interrogate clinical biopsy samples both for basic research and translational medicine purposes. For this we use a technique called Molecular Copy-number Counting which is essentially a multiplex hemi-nested single molecule digital PCR protocol. The advantages of MCC are that we can use it to extract multilocus information from tiny quantities of starting DNA extracted from formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded archived material. In this talk I will describe the MCC strategy in the general context of digital PCR, how we have applied it to challenging clinical samples and how we have now modified the protocol to derive both multilocus copy-number and sequence information (including using NGS) from these samples.

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