Basics of Pipetting Handbook - Your Guide to Getting the Most Out of Your Pipette

Pipettes and pipette accessories are staples in most laboratory environments, from biochemistry to pharmaceuticals to beverage quality control. Because different assays have different needs in terms of equipment and technique, it is important to assess the particular set of needs required in your lab. Key requirements for most modern-day applications include:  

  • Accuracy
  • Minimizing human error 
  • Speed
  • Easy-to-clean instruments
  • Precision
  • Ability to decontaminate
  • Avoiding contamination 

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Commonly Asked Questions 

1. What are common applications for pipetting?

  • Cell culture/cell-based assays
  • Analytics and quality control  
  • Immunology 
  • Microbiology and virology 

2. Which types of contamination can occur as a result of pipetting?  

  • There are three types of contamination that can occur when pipetting: pipette-to-sample (contaminated pipette or pipette tip compromises sample), sample-to-pipette (liquid or aerosol particles enter pipette body) and sample-to-sample (also known as carryover contamination). 

3. What are the common handling errors in pipetting?  

  • Common pipetting errors include failure to pre-wet pipette tips, choosing the wrong mode, using improper pipette tips, tip wiping and simple human error like working too fast or pipetting at an angle. 

Have you thought about what your pipetting needs are? Is your laboratory using the pipetting equipment and techniques that will yield optimal results? Download this informative guide and learn everything you need to know about pipetting technique, pipette equipment and proper maintenance.  

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