Development of pretreatment protocol for DNA extraction from biofilm attached to biologic activated carbon (BAC) granules

  • Shuting Zhang
  • Bo Wei
  • Xin Yu
  • Bing Liu
  • Zhuoying Wu
  • Li Gu
Research Article


The biologic activated carbon (BAC) process is widely used in drinking water treatments. A comprehensive molecular analysis of the microbial community structure provides very helpful data to improve the reactor performance. However, the bottleneck of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) extraction from BAC attached biofilm has to be solved since the conventional procedure was unsuccessful due to firm biomass attachment and adsorption capacity of the BAC granules. In this study, five pretreatments were compared, and adding skim milk followed by ultrasonic vibration was proven to be the optimal choice. This protocol was further tested using the vertical BAC samples from the full-scale biofilter of Pinghu Water Plant. The results showed the DNAyielded a range of 40 μg·g−1 BAC (dry weight) to over 100 μg·g−1 BAC (dry weight), which were consistent with the biomass distribution. All results suggested that the final protocol could produce qualified genomic DNA as a template from the BAC filter for downstream molecular biology researches.


bacterial DNA extraction biological activated carbon (BAC) biofilm water treatment pretreatment protocol 


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Copyright information

© Higher Education Press and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shuting Zhang
    • 1
  • Bo Wei
    • 1
  • Xin Yu
    • 1
  • Bing Liu
    • 1
  • Zhuoying Wu
    • 1
  • Li Gu
    • 1
  1. 1.Key Laboratory of Urban Environment and Health, Institute of Urban EnvironmentChina Academy of SciencesXiamenChina

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