A method for detecting a target nucleic acid sequence in a sample is provided using hybridization probes which competitively hybridize to a target nucleic acid. According to the method, a target nucleic acid sequence is hybridized to first and second hybridization probes which are complementary to overlapping portions of the target nucleic acid sequence, the first hybridization probe including a first complexing agent capable of forming a binding pair with a second complexing agent and the second hybridization probe including a detectable marker. The first complexing agent attached to the first hybridization probe is contacted with a second complexing agent, the second complexing agent being attached to a solid support such that when the first and second complexing agents are attached, target nucleic acid sequences hybridized to the first hybridization probe become immobilized on to the solid support. The immobilized target nucleic acids are then separated and detected by detecting the detectable marker attached to the second hybridization probe. A kit for performing the method is also provided.
The United States government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract Number W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.