Can the type of modification incorporated into a DNA or RNA oligo affect the stability or shelf life of the oligo?
For the modifications tested at this point, the pattern of degradation seen for modified oligos is similar to that for standard oligos. However, stability or shelf-life information has not been collected for all modifications offered.
For ideal stability, oligos that are to be stored long term should be stored frozen, at –20°C. If the oligos are going to be resuspended, storage in a TE buffer (10 mM Tris, 0.1 mM EDTA, pH 7.5–8.0; such as IDTE) is better than using water (non-DEPC treated). The impact from the type of storage medium used is marginal at –20°C but becomes more important at higher temperatures. It is ideal to store oligos in the dark. Exposure to UV light should be avoided, and ambient lab light should be minimized, particularly for some types of modified oligos.
Please see the DECODED™ article, Storing oligos: 7 things you should know, for data on oligonucleotide storage and a more thorough explanation.