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Zhou Y.,Beijing Institute of Radiation Medicine | Zhou Y.,Sichuan University | Qu W.,Beijing Institute of Radiation Medicine | Lu Y.,Beijing Institute of Radiation Medicine | And 6 more authors.

The visualization of gene structure plays an important role in polymerase chain reaction (PCR) primer design, especially for eukaryotic genes with a number of splice variants that users need to distinguish between via PCR. Here, we describe a visualized web server for primer design named VizPrimer. It utilizes the new information technology (IT) tools, HTML5 to display gene structure and JavaScript to interact with the users. In VizPrimer, the users can focus their attention on the gene structure and primer design strategy, without wasting time calculating the exon positions of splice variants or manually configuring complicated parameters. In addition, VizPrimer is also suitable for the design of PCR primers for amplifying open reading frames and detecting single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). © The Author 2011. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. Source

Qu W.,Beijing Institute of Radiation Medicine | Zhou Y.,Beijing Institute of Radiation Medicine | Zhou Y.,Sichuan University | Zhang Y.,Beijing Institute of Radiation Medicine | And 5 more authors.
Nucleic Acids Research

Evaluating the specificity of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) primers is an essential step in PCR primer design. The MFEprimer-2.0 server allows users to check primer specificity against genomic DNA and messenger RNA/complementary DNA sequence databases quickly and easily. MFEprimer-2.0 uses a k-mer index algorithm to accelerate the search process for primer binding sites and uses thermodynamics to evaluate binding stability between each primer and its DNA template. Several important characteristics, such as the sequence, melting temperature and size of each amplicon, either specific or non-specific, are reported on the results page. Based on these characteristics and the user-friendly output, users can readily draw conclusions about the specificity of PCR primers. Analyses for degenerate primers and multiple PCR primers are also supported in MFEprimer-2.0. In addition, the databases supported by MFEprimer-2.0 are comprehensive, and custom databases can also be supported on request. The MFEprimer-2.0 server does not require a login and is freely available at http://biocompute.bmi.ac.cn/CZlab/MFEprimer-2.0. More over, the MFEprimer-2.0 command-line version and local server version are open source and can be downloaded at https://github.com/quwubin/MFEprimer/wiki/Manual/. © 2012 The Author(s). Source

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