Laboratory contamination over time during low-biomass sample analysis

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Laura S WeyrichAlan Cooper

Abstract

Bacteria are not only ubiquitous on earth but can also be incredibly diverse within clean laboratories and reagents. The presence of both living and dead bacteria in laboratory environments and reagents is especially problematic when examining samples with low endogenous content (e.g. skin swabs, tissue biopsies, ice, water, degraded forensic samples, or ancient material), where contaminants can outnumber endogenous microorganisms within samples. The contribution of contaminants within high-throughput studies remains poorly understood because of the relatively low number of contaminant surveys. Here, we examined 144 negative control samples (extraction blank and no-template amplification controls) collected in both typical molecular laboratories and an ultraclean ancient DNA laboratory over five years to characterize long-term contaminant diversity. We additionally compared the contaminant content within a homemade silica-based extraction method, commonly used to analyse low-endogenous samples, with a widely used commercial DNA extraction kit. The contaminant taxonomic profile of the ultraclean ancient DNA laboratory was unique compared to the modern molecular biology laboratories, and changed over time according to researchers...Continue Reading

Related Concepts

Biopsy
Clinical Protocols
DNA
Environment
Laboratory
Research Personnel
Silicon Dioxide
Extraction
DNA Amplification
Analysis

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