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IDT News Articles

IDT launches Double-Quenched Probes to increase qPCR sensitivity and precision

New ZEN™ quencher reduces background fluorescence and improves performance 

CORALVILLE, IA - 4 May 2010. Integrated DNA Technologies (IDT), the world leader in oligonucleotide synthesis, has introduced a new double-quenched probe, which increases the accuracy and reliability of 5’ nuclease qPCR experiments. While traditional probes have 20-30 bases between the dye and quencher, this novel proprietary probe design positions an internal ZEN quencher only 9 bases from the 5’ fluorophore. This shortened distance, particularly  when  combined  with  the  tandard  3’ quencher, significantly decreases background fluorescence and increases sensitivity. The chemical structure of the ZEN quencher stabilizes duplex formation which allows for its use in previously validated sequences. The improved functionality significantly increases qPCR accuracy and sensitivity when compared to traditional probes. 

Due to the incorporation of ZEN at fixed position 9 bases from the 5’ end, the quencher is always within close proximity of the probe. As such, the initial background fluorescence signal is much lower. This makes subsequent changes easily detectable and functionally increases assay sensitivity. In addition, while traditional probes do not remain well quenched over 30 base pairs, the double-quenched probes maintain a consistently low background even at 40 base pairs or longer. Thus, double-quenched probes result in lower Cq values when compared to traditional probes. This leads to an increase in specificity without any loss in  ensitivity or quenching efficiency. This is particularly useful for targets that are AT-rich and require longer probes. 

IDT offers a complete range  of standard and custom qPCR products including a free online RealTime PCR design tool which  optimizes primer and probe sequence for specific user requirements.