The main difference between GelRed® and GelGreen® is their fluorescence excitation and emission wavelengths. GelRed® has red fluorescence, similar to ethidium bromide. GelGreen® has green fluorescence, similar to SYBR® Green or SYBR® Safe. Both dyes are compatible with standard UV transilluminators. GelGreen® is also compatible with blue light transilluminators, which allow users to avoid exposing themselves and their DNA samples to ultraviolet radiation.
GelRed® and GelGreen® have higher sensitivity for double stranded nucleic acids compared to single stranded nucleic acids, but GelRed® is more sensitive for staining single stranded nucleic acids than GelGreen®. GelRed® is about twice as sensitive for double stranded nucleic acids compared to single-stranded nucleic acids, and about five times more sensitive than GelGreen® for staining single stranded nucleic acids.
For more information about these products, please visit our DNA stains technology page.
The water formulation is a newer and improved product compared to the stock in DMSO. We recommend using dyes in water to avoid the potential hazards of handling DMSO, which can be absorbed through the skin. We continue to offer dyes in DMSO because some users do not wish to alter their established laboratory protocols. Based on internal testing, both formulations perform similarly.
GelRed® is compatible with a standard UV transilluminator (302 or 312 nm).
GelGreen® has sufficient absorption between 250-300 nm and a strong absorption peak at around 500 nm. GelGreen® is compatible with a 254 nm UV transilluminator or a gel reader with visible light excitation such as a Dark Reader or a 488 nm laser gel scanner.
Please note that 100 bp DNA Ladder in TE Buffer (31040) contains a different assortment of band sizes than the discontinued 100 bp DNA Ladder (31031). Ready-to-Use 100 bp DNA Ladder (31032) contains the same assortment of band sizes as the discontinued 100 bp DNA Ladder (31031).