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    Humic substances in soil DNA samples can influence the assessment of microbial diversity and community composition. Using multiple steps during or after cell lysis adds expenses, is time-consuming, and causes DNA loss. A pretreatment of soil samples and a single step DNA extraction may improve experimental results. In order to optimize a protocol for obtaining high purity DNA from soil microbiota, five prewashing agents were compared in terms of their efficiency and effectiveness in removing soil contaminants. Residual contaminants were precipitated by adding 0.6 mL of 0.5 M CaCl2. Four cell lysis methods were applied to test their compatibility with the pretreatment (prewashing + Ca2+flocculation) and to ultimately identify the optimal cell lysis method for analyzing fungal communities in forest soils. The results showed that pretreatment with TNP + Triton X-100 + skim milk (100 mM Tris, 100 mMNa4P2O7, 1% polyvinylpyrrolidone, 100 mM NaCl, 0.05% Triton X-100, 4% skim milk, pH 10.0)removed most soil humic contaminants. When the pretreatment was combined with Ca2+flocculation, the purity of all soil DNA samples was further improved. DNA samples obtained by the fast glass bead-beating method (MethodFGB) had the highest purity. The resulting DNA was successfully used, without further purification steps, as a template for polymerase chain reaction targeting fungal internal transcribed spacer regions. The results obtained by terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis indicated that the MethodFGB revealed greater fungal diversity and more distinctive community structure compared with the other methods tested. Our study provides a protocol for fungal cell lysis in soil, which is fast, convenient, and effective for analyzing fungal communities in forest soils.

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    Cheng, Fei; Hou, Lin; Woeste, Keith; Shang, Zhengchun; Peng, Xiaobang; Zhao, Peng; Zhang, Shuoxin. 2016. Soil pretreatment and fast cell lysis for direct polymerase chain reaction from forest soils for terminal restriction fragment length polymorphism analysis of fungal communities. Brazilian Journal of Microbiology. 47(4): 817-827.


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    Cell lysis, DNA extraction method, DNA purity, Terminal restriction fragment, length polymorphism, Fungal community

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