Because the unwinding of the double helix occurs abruptly at a certain temperature, the process is referred to as 'melting'. The higher the GC percentage, the higher the melting temperature. The melting temperature can be lowered by the addition of urea or formamide.

Urea and formamide are the two most common agents which accomplish chemical denaturation. These substances act to disrupt the hydrogen bonding between the nitrogen bases. Usually some combination of formamide, urea, and heat is employed, for example, in sample preparation for denaturing electrophoresis of DNA, an important separation technique for analysis or purification in the molecular biology laboratory.

The WikiPremed MCAT Course is a comprehensive course in the undergraduate level general sciences. Undergraduate level physics, chemistry, organic chemistry and biology are presented by this course as a unified whole within a spiraling curriculum. Please read our policies on Privacy and Shipping & Returns.  Contact Us. MCAT is a registered trademark of the Association of American Medical Colleges, which does not endorse the WikiPremed Course. WikiPremed offers the customers of our publications or our teaching services no guarantees regarding eventual performance on the MCAT.

Creative Commons License
WikiPremed is a trademark of Wisebridge Learning Systems LLC. The work of WikiPremed is published under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial ShareAlike License. There are elements of work here, such as a subset of the images in the archive from WikiPedia, that originated as GNU General Public License works, so take care to follow the unique stipulations of that license in printed reproductions.