Quantitation of RNA using the polymerase chain reaction

Trends Genet. 1993 Nov;9(11):380-5. doi: 10.1016/0168-9525(93)90137-7.


Sequential use of reverse transcriptase and the polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) permits rapid and sensitive detection of specific RNAs. However, the greatest advantage of RT-PCR, its remarkable sensitivity, has also limited its usefulness in quantitative applications, since the effects of minor variations in reaction conditions from sample to sample are greatly magnified during the amplification process. Several recently developed techniques circumvent this problem, allowing accurate quantitation of RNA using RT-PCR.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Chickens
  • Drosophila
  • Humans
  • Mice
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction / methods*
  • RNA / analysis*
  • RNA / chemistry
  • RNA / isolation & purification
  • RNA-Directed DNA Polymerase
  • Transfection


  • RNA primers
  • RNA
  • RNA-Directed DNA Polymerase