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Med Mycol. 1998 Oct;36(5):299-303.

Comparison of six extraction techniques for isolation of DNA from filamentous fungi.

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Program in Infectious Diseases, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, University of Washington, Seattle, USA.


Filamentous fungi have a sturdy cell wall which is resistant to the usual DNA extraction procedures. We determined the DNA extraction procedure with the greatest yield of high quality fungal DNA and the least predilection for cross-contamination of equipment between specimens. Each of six extraction methods was performed using Aspergillus fumigatus hyphae. The six methods were: (1) glass bead pulverization with vortexing; (2) grinding with mortar and pestle followed by glass bead pulverization; (3) glass bead pulverization using 1% hydroxyacetyl trimethyl ammonium bromide (CTAB) buffer in a water bath sonicator; (4) water bath sonication in CTAB buffer; (5) grinding followed by incubation with CTAB; and (6) lyticase enzymatic cell lysis. Genomic DNA yields were measured by spectrophotometry and by visual reading of 2% agarose gels, with shearing assessed by the migration of the DNA on the gel. Genomic fungal DNA yields were highest for Method 1, followed by Methods 5 approximately = to 2 >3 approximately = to 4 approximately = to 6. Methods 2 and 5, both of which involved grinding with mortar and pestle, led to shearing of the genomic DNA in one of two trials each. We conclude that the use of glass beads with extended vortexing is optimal for extraction of microgramme amounts of DNA from filamentous fungal cultures.

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