polymerase chain reaction


(puh-LIM-eh-rays chayn ree-AK-shun)
A laboratory method used to make many copies of a specific DNA sequence. Also called PCR.
A procedure that produces millions of copies of a short segment of DNA through repeated cycles of: (1) denaturation, (2) annealing, and (3) elongation. Polymerase chain reaction is a very common procedure in molecular genetic testing and may be used to generate a sufficient quantity of DNA to perform a test (e.g., allele-specific amplification, trinucleotide repeat quantification). Also called PCR.