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Non-destructive extraction of DNA from preserved tissues in medical collections


Rayo, Enrique; Ferrari, Giada; Neukamm, Judith; Akgül, Gülfirde; Breidenstein, Abagail M; Cooke, Martyn; Phillips, Carina; Bouwman, Abigail S; Rühli, Frank J; Schuenemann, Verena J (2022). Non-destructive extraction of DNA from preserved tissues in medical collections. BioTechniques, 72(2):60-64.

Abstract

Museum specimens and histologically fixed material are valuable samples for the study of historical soft tissues and represent a possible pathogen-specific source for retrospective molecular investigations. However, current methods for molecular analysis are inherently destructive, posing a dilemma between performing a study with the available technology, thus damaging the sample, and conserving the material for future investigations. Here the authors present the first tests of a non-destructive alternative that facilitates genetic analysis of fixed wet tissues while avoiding tissue damage. The authors extracted DNA from the fixed tissues as well as their embedding fixative solution, to quantify the DNA that was transferred to the liquid component. The results show that human historical DNA can be retrieved from the fixative material of medical specimens and provide new options for sampling valuable collections.

Abstract

Museum specimens and histologically fixed material are valuable samples for the study of historical soft tissues and represent a possible pathogen-specific source for retrospective molecular investigations. However, current methods for molecular analysis are inherently destructive, posing a dilemma between performing a study with the available technology, thus damaging the sample, and conserving the material for future investigations. Here the authors present the first tests of a non-destructive alternative that facilitates genetic analysis of fixed wet tissues while avoiding tissue damage. The authors extracted DNA from the fixed tissues as well as their embedding fixative solution, to quantify the DNA that was transferred to the liquid component. The results show that human historical DNA can be retrieved from the fixative material of medical specimens and provide new options for sampling valuable collections.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Evolutionary Medicine
08 Research Priority Programs > Evolution in Action: From Genomes to Ecosystems
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Uncontrolled Keywords:General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology, Biotechnology
Language:English
Date:1 February 2022
Deposited On:01 Feb 2022 16:23
Last Modified:18 Jun 2024 03:35
Publisher:Informa Healthcare
ISSN:0736-6205
OA Status:Gold
Free access at:Publisher DOI. An embargo period may apply.
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.2144/btn-2021-0014
PubMed ID:35037474
  • Content: Published Version
  • Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)