Preparation of genomic DNA from a single species of uncultured magnetotactic bacterium by multiple-displacement amplification

Atsushi Arakaki, Mie Shibusawa, Masahito Hosokawa, Tadashi Matsunaga*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Magnetotactic bacteria comprise a phylogenetically diverse group that is capable of synthesizing intracellular magnetic particles. Although various morphotypes of magnetotactic bacteria have been observed in the environment, bacterial strains available in pure culture are currently limited to a few genera due to difficulties in their enrichment and cultivation. In order to obtain genetic information from uncultured magnetotactic bacteria, a genome preparation method that involves magnetic separation of cells, flow cytometry, and multiple displacement amplification (MDA) using Φ29 polymerase was used in this study. The conditions for the MDA reaction using samples containing 1 to 100 cells were evaluated using a pure-culture magnetotactic bacterium, "Magnetospirillum magneticum AMB-1," whose complete genome sequence is available. Uniform gene amplification was confirmed by quantitative PCR (Q-PCR) when 100 cells were used as a template. This method was then applied for genome preparation of uncultured magnetotactic bacteria from complex bacterial communities in an aquatic environment. A sample containing 100 cells of the uncultured magnetotactic coccus was prepared by magnetic cell separation and flow cytometry and used as an MDA template. 16S rRNA sequence analysis of the MDA product from these 100 cells revealed that the amplified genomic DNA was from a single species of magnetotactic bacterium that was phylogenetically affiliated with magnetotactic cocci in the Alphaproteobacteria. The combined use of magnetic separation, flow cytometry, and MDA provides a new strategy to access individual genetic information from magnetotactic bacteria in environmental samples.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1480-1485
Number of pages6
JournalApplied and Environmental Microbiology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2010 Mar
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Food Science
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Ecology


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