Mentors at Your Benchside

A good mentor can be the difference between success and failure. But what to do if you don't have help on hand? Mentors At Your Benchside provides curated help and advice from experienced researchers on various topics, from lab skills and techniques to career progression. Each short episode is bursting with easy-to-access help and advice that can improve your results and help you get the most out of your time in the lab.

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What is PCR? The Beginner’s Guide

Updated about 1 month ago.

#4 — PCR is a useful lab technique used to copy, sequence or quantify DNA. If you're new to PCR, this episode is for you. We cover the five things you need to get started with PCR and explain how to run a polymerase chain reaction.

Read the full article to learn more about setting up a PCR. [1]

Learn more about Kary Mullis and the invention of PCR, and about the first thermocycler "Mr Cycle". [2–4] For practical tips, see our article on the top tips for primer design. [5]

1. What is PCR? The Beginner’s Guide. Available at:
2. Kary B. Mullis – Facts. Nobel Prize Outreach AB 2022. Fri. 1 Jul 2022. Available at:
3. The Invention of PCR. Available at:
4. Mr. Cycle, Thermal Cycler. Available at:
5. How to Survive a Difficult PCR. Available at: