Starting a biology laboratory can be a big headache because of the vast amount of equipment you may require, most of which are very expensive. If you plan to establish a lab, this article will guide you on the most essential equipment.
This type of microscope uses fluorescence to let you see cellular and subcellular compounds of proteins or dyes. It uses visible light as a source of illumination, which absorbs and reflects on your sample. Fluorescent microscopes achieve higher resolution images than optical ones because they use fluorophores which bond to the molecules of the sample under observation. The light can either illuminate the entire sample or individual molecules in the sample. White light is the most commonly used in these microscopes because it has all light wavelengths in the visible spectrum.
Samples need to be stored at extremely low temperatures so that the cells do not die. You will need to purchase an ultra-low temperature freezer for this purpose which supports extremely low temperatures ranging between -45 to -150 degrees Celsius. Different types of samples can be stored in different types of freezers, so keep that in mind when choosing the specific kind of freezer you want, whether it is a chest, upright, under-the-counter, or table-top freezer.
Gel electrophoresis is a process used in spatial biology to extract RNA, DNA fragments, and proteins for analysis according to their charge and size. It is highly versatile and used in labs spanning different fields like forensic science, medicine, and conservation biology. Some of its common applications are DNA sequencing, plant breeding, genome mapping, and DNA fingerprinting. To analyze molecular samples through this system, you collect and load the samples into a gel-filled chamber, then equip the electrophoresis equipment with a cathode (positive electron) and an anode (negative electrode) on the other. This creates an electric current between the two ends, separating the fragments based on their charge and size.
A PCR machine is a tool for amplifying DNA or RNA samples from a genome. It is used in various fields, including microbiology, genetics, pharmaceutical research, and forensic science. The DNA sequencing is done in three steps: denaturing, annealing, and elongation using five reagents, including a PCR buffer and DNA template, to obtain millions of copies of the DNA sequence being analyzed. A next-generation sequencer (NGS), is used to sequence DNA and RNA samples. You can use it to analyze either an entire genome or isolate some genes.
An analytical lab balance is a special type of weighing balance used to measure micro samples ranging from .01 to 500 milligrams. The balance comes with weighing pans enclosed in a glass box to prevent dust and other particles from entering, interfering with your measurements. You should always place the samples you want to measure on a container first, and only place samples directly on the pan if they are unreactive and at room temperature. If you are placing the sample on a container, first measure the container’s weight for accurate results.
This is a climate-controlled sealed chamber used to grow cells inside a life science lab for research and testing. The oxygen and carbon dioxide levels in this box are controlled to assimilate those that the sample’s natural habitat comprises. For instance, if the cells being studied are those of an animal, the climate inside the incubator will be set to mimic the environment inside the animal’s body. To grow cells inside the incubator, place the sample in a petri dish and store it inside the incubator for the required amount of time.
Any laboratory that works with any kind of chemicals needs a fume hood to prevent you from inhaling dangerous chemicals. These hoods are fire-resistant, and chemical-resistant equipment that draws in dust, chemical vapor, and gasses and safely ventilates them. They create a safe environment for you to conduct your experiments and research while minimizing the risk of getting exposed to hazardous chemicals. You will also require protective gloves, fire extinguishers, and first aid kits.