Exploring microbial diversity in volcanic environments: A review of methods in DNA extraction

Herrera, Aude and Cockell, Charles S. (2007). Exploring microbial diversity in volcanic environments: A review of methods in DNA extraction. Journal of Microbiological Methods, 70(1) pp. 1–12.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.mimet.2007.04.005


The last decade has been marked by a large number of studies focused on understanding the distribution of microorganisms in volcanic environments. These studies are motivated by the desire to elucidate how the geochemically extreme conditions of such environments can influence microbial diversity both on the surface and in the subsurface of the Earth. The exploration of microbial community diversity has generally not relied on culture-dependent methods, but has been carried out using environmental DNA extraction. Because of the large diversity of chemically and physically complex samples, extracting DNA from volcanic environments is technically challenging. In view of the emerging literature, and our own experience in the optimisation of methods for DNA extraction from volcanic materials, it is timely to provide a methodological comparison. This review highlights and discusses new insights and methods published on DNA extraction methods from volcanic samples, considering the different volcanic environments. A description of a recent method for DNA extraction from basalt and obsidian glass rock samples from Iceland is included. Finally, we discuss these approaches in the wider context of modern work to understand the microbial diversity of volcanic environments. (C) 2007 Elsevier B.V All rights reserved.

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