A Novel Technology of Extract Nucleic Acids from Different Environmental Samples including
Plants, Water and Soil

By: Won-Sik Kim1, and Yousef Haj-Ahmad1,2, (1)Norgen Biotek Corp., Thorold, ON, Canada, (2)Brock University. St. Catharines, ON, Canada

Product No. E4788, E4913


Preparation of high quality nucleic acids from environmental samples is critical to allow for the use of the purified DNA and RNA in downstream research and diagnostic applications. However, preparation of RNA and DNA from environmental samples is a challenging process due to tedious and time consuming procedures which often involve the use of hazardous phenol or chloroform. Furthermore, environmental samples often contain high levels of natural inhibitors (including plant phenolic compounds and soil humic acids) which co-purify with the nucleic acids and interfere with sensitive downstream applications, such as real-time PCR. For example, molecular-based diagnosis of pathogenic infections requires highly pure nucleic acid samples, as poor genetic material quality may lead to misdiagnosis where infections may be missed when they are indeed present in a sample due to the presence of PCR inhibitors.

Norgen Biotek produces the leading products in Canada for the isolation and purification of genetic materials from different environmental samples such as plant, soil and water. Norgen’s unique proprietary purification technology allows for the isolation of high yields of RNA and DNA that are free from inhibitors. The technology allows for the isolation of all sizes of RNA from environmental samples, including small RNA species (siRNA and miRNA), without the use of phenol or chloroform. The spin-column based procedure is rapid, and the purified nucleic acids can be used in a number of downstream research and diagnostic applications. Here, Norgen’s technology is demonstrated through the isolation of high yields of total RNA from a variety of plant samples, the isolation and amplification of DNA from clay and potting soil, and the isolation of both DNA and RNA simultaneously from water samples. In all cases high yields of the nucleic acids are isolated free from any inhibitors.