Next generation sequencing has quickly become the preferred method over tiling arrays for most genomics and transcriptomics needs. The major exception has been the study of microRNAs, where highly sensitive probe arrays such as the 3D-Gene® miRNA profiling platform are still widely used. A large part of the reason for the persistence of array dominance in small RNA expression profiling is caused by the variability introduced in sequencing library prep protocols involving complicated hands-on PAGE purification steps.
The CleanTag™ Ligation Kit for Small RNA Library Preparation now allows users to remove the Gel Purification steps from their protocols and shift to more automated bead purification protocols. This is particularly important for cases when RNA quantity is limiting. Traditional small RNA library prep protocols will result in the formation of adapter dimers (similar to primer dimers) when RNA quantities are limiting, thus greatly reducing the number of usable reads.