Sports and Exercise Sciences Research Institute Standard Operating Procedure Comet Assay (SS/SOP0018) Electrophoresis, used in this assay, is a chemical separation technique which separates molecules (DNA, RNA and proteins) based on their size and electrical charge Only trained personnel will be permitted to operate the electrophoresis equipment and signed the COSHH Assessment Record Form that the relevant COSHH forms have been read Equipment is checked for leaks and/or damage prior to use by technical staff Power supply is PAT tested annually User must wear lab coat, heat protective and nitrile gloves and eye protection Manufacturer’s build in safety precautions to minimize risks SOLUTIONS REQUIRED PROTOCOL Heat 1% normal melting point agarose in PBS to 80°C for 5 minutes (depending on quantity of agarose); then cool to 44°C Pre-coat glass slides with the 1% agarose above Heat 1% low melting point agarose in PBS to 80°C for 5 minutes (depending on quantity of agarose); then cool to 37°C Mix the cells with 1% low melting point agarose above (50 µl of cells to 150 µl LMPA), apply to slide and allow to solidify under a coverslip The cells are lysed with lysis solution for at least 1 hour at 4°C !!!!!!!!!!!!!!INCUBATION PERIOD WITH ENZYME!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Place slides in the electrophoresis buffer and leave for 20 minutes at 4°C Switch power supply on and set the voltage to 25 and the current to 300 mA and leave for 20 – 30 minutes at 4°C. Neutralise the slides with PBS firstly for 5 minutes at 4°C and then distilled H2O for 5 minutes at 4°C. Allow the slides to dry overnight at room temperature. Stain with SYBR Gold or DAPI and gently roll on the see-saw shaker for 20 – 30 minutes. Allow the slides to dry and quantify under the microscope.