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oligonucleotide microarrays

Tuesday 20 February 2007

In oligonucleotide microarrays, the probes are designed to match parts of the sequence of known or predicted mRNAs. There are commercially available designs that cover complete genomes from companies such as GE Healthcare, Affymetrix, Ocimum Biosolutions, or Agilent.

These microarrays give estimations of the absolute value of gene expression and therefore the comparison of two conditions requires the use of two separate microarrays.

Oligonucleotide Arrays can be either produced by piezoelectric deposition with full length oligonucleotides or in-situ synthesis.

Long Oligonucleotide Arrays are composed of 60-mers, or 50-mers and are produced by ink-jet printing on a silica substrate. Short Oligonucleotide Arrays are composed of 25-mer or 30-mer and are produced by photolithographic synthesis (Affymetrix) on a silica substrate or piezoelectric deposition (GE Healthcare) on an acrylamide matrix.

More recently, Maskless Array Synthesis from NimbleGen Systems has combined flexibility with large numbers of probes. Arrays can contain up to 390,000 spots, from a custom array design. New array formats are being developed to study specific pathways or disease states for a systems biology approach.

Oligonucleotide microarrays often contain control probes designed to hybridize with RNA spike-ins. The degree of hybridization between the spike-ins and the control probes is used to normalize the hybridization measurements for the target probes.

See also

- DNA microarrays

  • spotted microarrays

- representational oligonucleotide microarray analysis (ROMA)


- Irizarry RA, Hobbs B, Collin F, et al. Exploration, normalization, and summaries of high density oligonucleotide array probe level data. Biostatistics 2003;4:249–64.

- Lakshmi B, Hall IM, Egan C, Alexander J, Leotta A, Healy J, Zender L, Spector MS, Xue W, Lowe SW, Wigler M, Lucito R. Mouse genomic representational oligonucleotide microarray analysis: detection of copy number variations in normal and tumor specimens. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2006 Jul 25;103(30):11234-9. PMID: 16844783

- Barrett MT, Scheffer A, Ben-Dor A, Sampas N, Lipson D, Kincaid R, Tsang P, Curry B, Baird K, Meltzer PS, Yakhini Z, Bruhn L, Laderman S. Comparative genomic hybridization using oligonucleotide microarrays and total genomic DNA. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2004 Dec 21;101(51):17765-70. PMID: 15591353