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How PCR works

Maverick scientist Kary Mullis invented this powerful new technique in 1986. PCR uses the natural ability of DNA to copy itself, using a builder enzyme. During PCR, the enzyme copies a section of DNA in the sample millions of times using the bases A, C, G and T as the raw materials, and short strands of DNA called primers to start the process. Scientists can obtain plenty of DNA from a few cells in just an hour or so.

How PCR works.

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