HOWTO set up a molecular biology lab for less than $1000


11 Responses to “HOWTO set up a molecular biology lab for less than $1000”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Having not done science at school/uni … what is a molecular lab used for?

  2. SednaBoo says:

    Wouldn’t you also want an autoclave? Is there a way to grow up plasmids easier than with E. coli?

  3. Takuan says:

    It’s Alive!!

  4. SednaBoo says:

    Anonymous @10: Must have a pretty big pressure cooker for sterilizing all that labware!

  5. newe1344 says:

    This is really interesting. Lately I’ve been seeing lots of stuff on Biohacking…There are a couple of speaches over at TED and hackaday has a video of the MIT guy asking computer hackers for help to bring down the cost of “biohacking.” I’m really psyched about this stuff. It could be the next thing to get into!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Laundry room is right! Kitchen’s not cool, that’s for food. Fortunately, my wife signed off on the laundry room…

    @sednaboo: autoclave == pressure cooker, pretty much. For growing plasmids, I think E coli is easiest, and that’s why everyone does it that way.

  7. Snig says:

    The journal/mag “Biotechniques” (
    used to have a lot of DIY stuff for building lab equipment, including how to make your own gel electrophoresis apparatus. They may still, but I’m no longer in the field, and don’t think I could talk my wife into starting a lab in the laundry room.

  8. kevin143 says:

    If anyone is seriously interested in doing this, I have all of the equipment needed, including a 36” hood in like-new condition. I assembled my own lab doing the ebay method and don’t need it any more. The hood was the only thing we bought new.

    Send me an email: kfischer &@ gmail *& com

  9. klenow says:

    Wow…memories. I used to use a cycler just like the PE one there. Only thing more old-school than that thing is three water baths and a tube rack (yes, hyperbole. Deal with it).

    Funny how some of the stuff just hasn’t changed, though. The centrifuge and cycler are damn near antiques; I haven’t seen either of those in over a decade. But the pipettes, gel box, water bath heater, illuminator and incubator are pretty much the same. In fact, those are the same pipettes I use in the hood.

  10. Diatryma says:

    When our thermocycler died beyond repair– our lab director pulled it apart and did his best to fix it, but alas, ’twas not to be– we ended up with two, one new, one from Ebay. I really like the idea of someone having a molec lab in her kitchen (okay, better to put it in a second kitchen. Or eat out a lot).

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