AAT Bioquest

Can ethidium bromide be absorbed through skin?

Posted January 14, 2022


Yes, ethidium bromide can be readily absorbed through the skin. Because ethidium bromide can bind with DNA, exposure through skin absorption can be highly hazardous. It’s crucial to avoid direct contact when working with this chemical. 

When handling ethidium bromide, skin protective measures include:

  • Wearing disposable nitrile gloves – double glove offer extra protection when working with high concentrations of EtBr
  • Wearing long-sleeved lab clothes
  • Wearing closed-toe shoes
  • Wearing protective goggles
  • Washing hands thoroughly after handling this chemical
Additional resources

Human fibroblast strains showing increased sensitivity or resistance to ethidium bromide

Gelite™ Safe DNA Gel Stain *10,000X DMSO Solution*