North American Symposium on Bat Research
Preserved tissues provide a wealth of genetic information that can be revisited by researchers, but the quality of the DNA in preserved tissue is affected by the method and conditions under which it is preserved. Due to sampling location climate and logistics, tissue preservation methods are often limited. While tissue and storage media type may impact the extent to which DNA degrades, the relative efficacy of commonly-used storage media has never been directly tested. We analyzed differences in DNA yield for wing tissue preserved in three media: ethanol, dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO), and silica gel desiccant. DNA extraction yield was also compared for different types of non-lethally sampled tissues: buccal swabs and wing punches. We found that wing tissues preserved in silica gel yield significantly more total DNA (µg/µL) than in DMSO (P = 0.032) or ethanol (P = 0.029), and wing punches yield more total DNA than buccal swabs (P = 3.332 x 10-7). Additionally, qPCR was used to determine which tissue type and preservation methods yielded the highest quality bat DNA. These results demonstrate that choices in sampled tissue and storage media type can have significant impacts on the quantity and quality of DNA obtained from genetic samples.