Variables Influencing Extraction of Nucleic Acids from Microbial Plankton (Viruses, Bacteria, and Protists) Collected on Nanoporous Aluminum Oxide Filters

  • Jaclyn A. Mueller, Alexander I. Culley, Grieg F. Steward
  • Applied and Environmental Microbiology, April 2014, ASM Journals
  • DOI: 10.1128/aem.00245-14

Extracting DNA and RNA from viruses, bacteria, and protists

What is it about?

This paper describes how to efficiently extract DNA and RNA from microorganisms collected on aluminum oxide filters. These filters are convenient for collecting total microbial communities, including viruses, but, because of their small pore size and chemistry, some common extraction procedures do not work well with them. We evaluated the causes of inefficient extraction and show how to avoid them.

Why is it important?

Viruses are ecologically and genetically important contributors to microbial communities, but are poorly sampled in microbiome studies that rely on direct filtration through 0.2 ┬Ám membranes. This paper advances a technique for collecting both viruses and cells for nucleic acid extraction that is more convenient and higher throughput than tangential flow ultrafiltration or ultracentrifugation. The method can be used to obtain a more wholistic view of microbiomes.

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The following have contributed to this page: Professor Grieg F Steward