High-Throughput RT-qPCR for the Analysis of Circulating MicroRNAs

  • Geok Wee Tan
  • Lu Ping TanEmail author
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 1580)


Reverse transcription followed by real-time or quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) is the gold standard for validation of results from transcriptomic profiling studies such as microarray and RNA sequencing. The current need for most studies, especially biomarker studies, is to evaluate the expression levels or fold changes of many transcripts in a large number of samples. With conventional low to medium throughput qPCR platforms, many qPCR plates would have to be run and a significant amount of RNA input per sample will be required to complete the experiments. This is particularly challenging when the size of study material (small biopsy, laser capture microdissected cells, biofluid, etc.), time, and resources are limited. A sensitive and high-throughput qPCR platform is therefore optimal for the evaluation of many transcripts in a large number of samples because the time needed to complete the entire experiment is shortened and the usage of lab consumables as well as RNA input per sample are low. Here, the methods of high-throughput RT-qPCR for the analysis of circulating microRNAs are described. Two distinctive qPCR chemistries (probe-based and intercalating dye-based) can be applied using the methods described here.

Key words

High throughput qPCR Preamplification microRNA TaqMan miScript 



We thank the Director General of Health Malaysia for his approval to publish this article. The work described here is supported by the Ministry of Health Malaysia (NMRR-11-597-9667). We also acknowledge the support of the Director of Institute for Medical Research (IMR) Malaysia and colleagues at the Molecular Pathology Unit in IMR.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Molecular Pathology Unit, Cancer Research CentreInstitute for Medical ResearchKuala LumpurMalaysia

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