Bridge PCR is a PCR technique that embeds DNA on a surface for cloning. It is used by Illumina's HiSeq platform.
The DNA is fragmented (through sonication or any other method) and adapters are ligated to both ends.
The DNA is then denatured into single-stranded molecules. These fragments are then floated onto a flow cell which have corresponding adapter sequences that permit binding.
When the DNA strands are placed onto the slide, they attach to their corresponding adapter sequences.
Add dNTPs, and DNA polymerase enzyme to elongate DNA strands.
Denaturation the newly formed DNA strands and repeat until dense clusters of dsDNA are generated in each channel of flow cell.
The reverse strands are then cleaved and washed away.
After Bridge PCR is conducted on the flow cell, Illumina uses fluorescently labeled dNTP's to detect each nucleotide bases.
So for example, if a red fluorescent light goes off, then we know it's an A. If a blue light goes off, then we know it's a G, and so forth (colors here aren't accurate but you get the picture).
However, the signal produced by the synthesis of one dNTP on a strands is not enough to be detected. This is why we need to amplify the DNA sequences and producing a dense amount of sequences per area on the flow cell.
We'll see how Illumina is able to sequence millions of these dense colonies in parallel.
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