Image of Kary Mullis. In 1985, Kary Mullis invented the polymerase chain reaction (PCR), a method of amplifying or producing many copies of a specific piece of DNA. The revelation came to this eccentric character on a drive in northern California.
Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) enables researchers to produce millions of copies of a specific DNA sequence in approximately two hours. This automated process bypasses the need to use bacteria for amplifying DNA.