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Nat Rev Microbiol. 2005 Jun;3(6):499-504.

Stable isotope probing - linking microbial identity to function.

Author information

1
Department of Biological Sciences, University of Warwick, Gibbet Hill Road, Coventry CV4 7AL, UK.

Abstract

Stable isotope probing (SIP) is a technique that is used to identify the microorganisms in environmental samples that use a particular growth substrate. The method relies on the incorporation of a substrate that is highly enriched in a stable isotope, such as (13)C, and the identification of active microorganisms by the selective recovery and analysis of isotope-enriched cellular components. DNA and rRNA are the most informative taxonomic biomarkers and (13)C-labelled molecules can be purified from unlabelled nucleic acid by density-gradient centrifugation. The future holds great promise for SIP, particularly when combined with other emerging technologies such as microarrays and metagenomics.

PMID:
15886694
DOI:
10.1038/nrmicro1162
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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