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Appl Environ Microbiol. 2018 Mar 19;84(7). pii: e02627-17. doi: 10.1128/AEM.02627-17. Print 2018 Apr 1.

The Madness of Microbiome: Attempting To Find Consensus "Best Practice" for 16S Microbiome Studies.

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Animal and Veterinary Sciences, Scotland's Rural College (SRUC), Edinburgh, United Kingdom
The Roslin Institute and Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh, United Kingdom.
Contributed equally


The development and continuous improvement of high-throughput sequencing platforms have stimulated interest in the study of complex microbial communities. Currently, the most popular sequencing approach to study microbial community composition and dynamics is targeted 16S rRNA gene metabarcoding. To prepare samples for sequencing, there are a variety of processing steps, each with the potential to introduce bias at the data analysis stage. In this short review, key information from the literature pertaining to each processing step is described, and consequently, general recommendations for future 16S rRNA gene metabarcoding experiments are made.


16S RNA; DNA sequencing; microbiome

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