DNA recovery from microhymenoptera using six non-destructive methodologies with considerations for subsequent preparation of museum slides

Guzmán-Larralde, Adriana J.; Suaste-Dzul, Alba P.; Gallou, Adrien; Peña-Carrillo, Kenzy I.; Naaum, Amanda
January 2017
Genome;2017, Vol. 60 Issue 1, p85
Academic Journal
Because of the tiny size of microhymenoptera, successful morphological identification typically requires specific mounting protocols that require time, skills, and experience. Molecular taxonomic identification is an alternative, but many DNA extraction protocols call for maceration of the whole specimen, which is not compatible with preserving museum vouchers. Thus, non-destructive DNA isolation methods are attractive alternatives for obtaining DNA without damaging sample individuals. However, their performance needs to be assessed in microhymenopterans. We evaluated six non-destructive methods: (A) DNeasy® Blood & Tissue Kit; (B) DNeasy® Blood & Tissue Kit, modified; (C) Protocol with CaCl2 buffer; (D) Protocol with CaCl2 buffer, modified; (E) HotSHOT; and (F) Direct PCR. The performance of each DNA extraction method was tested across several microhymenopteran species by attempting to amplify the mitochondrial gene COI from insect specimens of varying ages: 1 day, 4 months, 3 years, 12 years, and 23 years. Methods B and D allowed COI amplification in all insects, while methods A, C, and E were successful in DNA amplification from insects up to 12 years old. Method F, the fastest, was useful in insects up to 4 months old. Finally, we adapted permanent slide preparation in Canada balsam for every technique. The results reported allow for combining morphological and molecular methodologies for taxonomic studies.


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