Quantitative PCR (qPCR, also known as Real-time PCR) is a method that measures the number of copies of a DNA region defined by PCR primers. Using this method, we can quantify particular taxa of interest in each sample.
DNA extraction and quality control
DNA is extracted from samples using the Qiagen MagAttract PowerSoil DNA KF Kit (Formerly MO BIO PowerSoil DNA Kit) optimized for the Thermofisher KingFisher robot. This kit uses magnetic beads to specifically capture DNA while excluding organic inhibitors. Inhouse testing has shown this kit to have a good balance of DNA yield and quality as demonstrated on a variety of environmental sample types.