Comparison of three DNA extraction methods for recovery of soil protist DNA

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The use of molecular methods to investigate protist communities in soil is in rapid development this decade. Molecular analysis of soil protist communities is usually dependant on direct genomic DNA extraction from soil and inefficient or differential DNA extraction of protist DNA can lead to bias in downstream community analysis. Three commonly used soil DNA extraction methods have been tested on soil samples from three European Long-Term Observatories (LTOs) with different land-use and three protist cultures belonging to different phylogenetic groups in different growth stages. The methods tested were: ISOm-11063 (a version of the ISO-11063 method modified to include a FastPrep ®-24 mechanical lysis step), GnS-GII (developed by the GenoSol platform to extract soil DNA in large-scale soil surveys) and a commercial DNA extraction kit - Power Lyzer™ PowerSoil® DNA Isolation Kit (MoBio). DNA yield and quality were evaluated along with DNA suitability for amplification of 18S rDNA fragments by PCR. On soil samples, ISOm-11063 yields significantly higher DNA for two of the three soil samples, however, MoBio extraction favors DNA quality. This method was also more effective to recover copies of 18S rDNA numbers from all soil types. In addition and despite the lower yields, higher DNA quality was observed with DNA extracted from protist cultures with the MoBio method. Likewise, a bead-beating step shows to be a good solution for DNA extraction of soil protists, since the recovery of DNA from protist cultures and from the different soil samples with the ISOm method proved to be efficient in recovering PCR-amplifiable DNA. This study showed that soil DNA extraction methods provide biased results towards the cyst stages of protist organism.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Microbiological Methods
Volume115
Pages (from-to)13-19
Number of pages7
ISSN0167-7012
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2015

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