How DNA Visualization Works & How We Save You Time & Money

Excedr - Transilluminator

Despite the diversity in methods, the Excedr lease program is able to source all instrument types and can accommodate any brand preferences your end-user might have. Request an estimate today and see how leasing can discount your transilluminator’s price.

All equipment brands/models are available

The Advantages of Excedr’s UV Transilluminator Leasing Program:

  • Eliminates the upfront cost of purchasing equipment by spreading its cost over time
  • Minimizes equipment downtime with included complete repair coverage and preventive maintenance
  • Takes advantage of potentially 100% tax deductible* payments, providing you significant cash-savings
  • Expedites the administrative work needed for instrument procurement and logistics
  • Conserves working capital,  enabling you to reinvest in your core business and operations (staffing, inventory, marketing/sales, etc.)
  • Accommodates all manufacturer and model preferences

*Please consult your tax advisor to determine the full tax implications of leasing equipment.

a microplate well leaning against a graduated cylinder on top of glassware storage

Transilluminators, a standard piece of laboratory equipment, are specifically designed to visualize nucleic acids after they have undergone gel electrophoresis.

By emitting high levels of ultraviolet light (UV) or high-intensity LED light, DNA, RNA, and macromolecules like protein are made visible. Gels that have been stained can be directly placed onto the device, and in the case of UV, the wavelength can be adjusted to fit your specific application needs.

Visualizing nucleic acids such as DNA and RNA, as well as macromolecules that include protein, is an important process in many life sciences, microbiology, and biotechnology laboratories. 

Before visualization can occur, DNA must be separated, identified, or purified using a common method known as gel electrophoresis. The electrophoretic migration rate of DNA through the agarose gel can depend on the weight of the sample, as well as the concentration of gel and strength of the electric field. 

This technique forms bands of DNA through separation. During or directly after the process is completed, the gel medium is stained using a fluorescent dye. This stain binds to nucleic acids, so as to mark the target DNA, RNA, or protein. 

Once the gel is stained, it is placed under a light source that can fluoresce or excite the stain, making the sample visible. In many cases, the light source used is UV light. Longwave UV light has been used to cause substances to glow or fluoresce under the correct conditions due to its reactivity with organic molecules.

Transilluminator Types, Stains, & Price

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The key application of a transilluminator is to illuminate electrophoresed agarose or polyacrylamide gels that have been stained using a fluorescent dye. In most cases, the dye is excited using ultraviolet light because of its ability to fluoresce. 

Because UV radiation can be harmful, there are some alternatives available worth considering such as LED light bulbs.

UV Transilluminator

Ethidium bromide is commonly introduced into the sample because of its fluorescent nature and its ability to intercalate into the DNA based on its unique structure. As the dye fluoresces, the DNA becomes visible.

A transilluminator comes equipped with a positionable blocking window to protect from direct exposure to ultraviolet light, as well as a filter to reduce the amount of visible light inside the housing. Simple to use and designed for efficiency, these devices provide an excellent excitation light source.


Blue Light Transilluminator

Operating using high-intensity blue LED light bulbs, these devices are an alternative to UV lightboxes. Light from inside the blue light transilluminator passes through a blue filter, producing an intense signal that then passes through an amber filter, providing a large viewing surface to view agarose gel containing stained DNA bands.

The LED bulbs do not pose a health risk and provide the same level of visibility as ultraviolet light. While ultraviolet radiation may possibly sunburn or cross-link your samples without the proper care, LED bulbs ensure quality images for publication or analysis without the possible risk of damage.

Moreover, the spectrum light of LED transilluminators can effectively excite many of the common nucleic acid stains used for ultraviolet radiation. Furthermore, LED bulbs have a longer life span compared to UV bulbs.


Gel Stains

It is worth considering which kind of dye you are using in gel electrophoresis, because this may affect your observations when using a transilluminator. A few common dyes for staining and visualizing DNA include:

  • Ethidium Bromide: This is the most commonly known dye for visualizing DNA. Used to stain the gel after electrophoresis, this dye can also be used in the gel mixture and buffer. This intercalating agent is highly useful due to its ability to interlock with DNA and its fluorescent qualities.
  • SYBR Gold: More sensitive than ethidium bromide, this stain can be used on single- or double-stranded DNA. It can also be used to stain RNA. Once it has paired with a nucleic acid, the dye exhibits high levels of fluorescence. This is one of the first stains created as an alternative to ethidium bromide.
  • SYBR Safe: As the name implies, SYBR safe was designed to be a safe alternative to ethidium bromide, as well as other SYBR stains. There is no acute toxicity found in this dye, so it is not considered a hazardous waste material. It can be used with blue LED transilluminators, causing less damage to DNA being visualized.
  • SYBR Green: This is a cyanine dye, used for a variety of fluorescence detection. It is composed of molecules containing polymethine bridges between two nitrogen atoms with a delocalized charge. Its ability to bind with DNA bands makes SYBR green highly useful in staining electrophoresed gels, however, because it is considered a mutagen, it should also be handled with care. EVA Green: This dye has been shown to have very low toxicity and mutagenicity, and inhibits PCR (polymerase chain reaction) to a lesser extent than other dyes, making it useful for any real-time PCR applications.

Transilluminator & Gel Imaging Leases to Fit Every Need

three shapes shown one after another: an erlenmeyer flask, boiling flask, and graduated cylinder

Visualization of DNA is an important step in a wide range of applications in life sciences laboratories. If you work in microbiology, biotechnology, or one of many other fields that utilize gel electrophoresis, investing in the right transilluminator is indispensable to the success of your laboratory’s research.

Although acquiring new equipment has its hurdles, we’re here to help. 

We offer a comprehensive leasing program that includes preventive maintenance and repair coverage. This lease program provides you with an alternative to purchasing new lab equipment outright, spreading out the cost over time so that you can continue daily operations undisturbed.

Operating Lease

This off-balance sheet financing structure provides three options at the end of the term. The lessee has the option to return the equipment to the lessor, renew at a discounted rate, or purchase the instrument for the fair market value. Monthly payments are also 100% tax deductible which yields additional monetary savings.


If you recently bought equipment, Excedr can offer you cash for your device and convert your purchase into a long-term rental. This is called a sale leaseback. If you’ve paid for equipment within the last ninety days, we can help you recoup your investment and allow you to make low monthly payments. This also frees up money in your budget rather than tying it down to a fixed asset.

Transilluminator Manufacturers & Models on the Market
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VWR International:
VWR UV Transilluminator, VWR White Light, VWR White Light/UV, VWR Blue Light

Cole-Parmer Benchtop Ultraviolet, Compact Benchtop Ultraviolet, High Performance UV, Ultraviolet/White Light, Blue Light, Stuart UV

Bio-Rad Laboratories:
UView Mini Transilluminator

Analytik Jena AG:
UVP Transilluminator, UVP FirstLight, UVP Visi-White, UVP Visi-Blue, UVP UV/White, UVP High Performance, UVP Plus

ThermoFisher Scientific:
Invitrogen Dual LED Blue/White Light, Safer Image 2.0 Blue Light

MaestroGEN, Inc.:
MLB-21 UltraBright, MB-21, MLB-16, MB-16, UUV-01 UltraSlim, LB-16 UltraBright, LB-17, SLB-01W UltraSlim, SLB-01 UltraSlim, RT-172 BandPeeper, SW-01 SlimWhite

Cleaver Scientific Ltd:
Dual Wavelength UV, Standard UV, proBLUEVIEW Dual Colour, safeVIEW-MINI2 Blue Light miniPCR Bio: blueBox Transilluminators, blueBox S, blueBox Pro

Viagene Bio Tech Inc.:
CoolBlue480, Cool-UV300, CoolUV400, CoolRed620, Cool-IR680 Accuris Instruments: Accuris UV Transilluminators, E3100 Compact, E3000


Operating Capital Benefits

Operating Capital Benefits

Excedr's operating lease structure allows you to keep your business credit line open for expansions, staffing, and other operational expenses. Additionally, it strengthens the cash flow of your business and keeps cash reserves free for business development opportunities.

Effects on Credit

Effects on Credit

Leasing / renting provides you with non-dilutive financing and does not hinder your future borrowing ability. You're able to acquire the equipment you need without the baggage associated with traditional financing.

Speed of Approval

Speed of Approval

Excedr's program allows you to respond quickly as your need for equipment and technology arises. You can be approved with minimal documentation and have the equipment you need in operation and generating revenue for your business quickly.

Refurbished Equipment

Refurbished Equipment

Unlike traditional financing and leasing companies, the Excedr program can accommodate refurbished equipment in addition to demo units. If you are looking for additional cost-savings, we recommend considering this option.