Corum:Whole Plasmid PCR

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Whole plasmid polymerase chain reaction (WP-PCR) protocol using PfuUltra II fusion HS DNA polymerase. It is imperative to use 5'-phosphorylated primers if the nicked DNA is going to be repaired downstream with ligase. PCR should be limited to templates of about 5 kb, but the protocol could probably be pushed up to 10 kb. See the PfuUltra II fusion manual. Primers should be sense-antisense pairs. Optimal amplification occurs with 30-35 b primers at 0.5 μM final concentration. At higher concentrations, the primers bind to each other, inhibiting amplification. For longer primers, the annealing temperature will need to be adjusted from the one mentioned in this protocol.


For a 50 μL WP-PCR reaction:

  • 37 μL H2O
  • 5 μL 10X PFU Ultra PCR buffer
  • 5 μL 10 μM sense/antisense primer mix (0.5 μM final, each)
  • 1 μL 12.5 mM (each) dNTP mix (0.25 mM final)
  • 1 μL 5 nM plasmid template (0.1 nM final)
  • 1 μL PfuUltra II fusion HS DNA polymerase


  1. In a PCR tube, add the components on ice in the order they are listed above. Mix gently and spin.
  2. Perform the following thermocycling program:
    1. Initial melting: 95 °C 2 min
    2. Melting: 95 °C 20 s
    3. Annealing: Ta °C 20 s, where Ta = Tm - 5 °C
    4. Elongation: 72 °C 2 min / kb template
    5. Repeat steps 2-4 a total of 30 times
    6. Final elongation: 72 °C 30 min
    7. 12-16 °C hold
  3. Verify product with gel electrophoresis.
  4. Quantify product with quantifluore DNA quantification.


Please feel free to post comments, questions, or improvements to this protocol. Happy to have your input!

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Relevant papers and books

  1. Sambrook, J and Russell, DW (2001) Molecular Cloning: A Laboratory Manual (Volume II) - Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press ISBN 0879695773


or instead, discuss this protocol.