AllGenetics collaborates in a study to estimate belowground plant abundance by DNA metabarcoding

The work, led by Dr. Silvia Matesanz (Universidad Rey Juan Carlos), has been published in Molecular Ecology Resources this week.

DNA metabarcoding has become the method of choice to detect and identify the species present in bulk samples. Using the reads assigned to each species as a proxy for species biomass in the original sample is an ongoing research topic.

In an article published in Molecular Ecology Resources this week and led by Dr. Silvia Matesanz, researchers from Universidad Rey Juan Carlos and AllGenetics have succeeded in obtaining quantitative data from root tissues of the five dominant plant species in a semiarid Mediterranean shrubland.

In this work, the researchers have implemented two quantification methods (linear models fits and correction indices) to improve root biomass estimates from DNA metabarcoding data. Applying both methods in mock community samples composed of root mixtures has effectively determined the relative abundance of the belowground plant species included in the study. The researchers conclude that by using post‐sequencing quantification methods on mock communities, DNA metabarcoding can be used to determine not only the presence of species but also their relative abundance in field samples of root mixtures.

AllGenetics is very proud to have taken part in this meaningful work that shows how post-sequencing treatments can greatly improve the power of DNA metabarcoding.