Knowl. Manag. Aquat. Ecosyst.
Number 424, 2023
Biological conservation, ecosystems restoration and ecological engineering
|Number of page(s)
|14 June 2023
Environmental DNA captured on the fish skin mucus – a potential bias to molecular diet analyses
Department of Ecology, Faculty of Natural Sciences, Comenius University, Bratislava, Slovakia
2 SNM-Natural History Museum Bratislava, Slovakia
3 Department of Zoology, Faculty of Natural Sciences, Comenius University, Bratislava, Slovakia
* Corresponding author: email@example.com
Accepted: 24 January 2023
Molecular diet analyses from faeces appear to be an ideal alternative to traditional feeding ecology studies. Nevertheless, this method can carry a risk of contamination from the environment or from body surface of the fish itself. To tackle the contamination problem, an experiment was performed with the main aim to identify whether foreign DNA is present or absent on the fish skin mucus, and if so, the second aim was to find out if this environmental DNA (eDNA) can be removed by repeated wiping of the skin mucus. Specimens of fish were exposed to eDNA and then their fish skin mucus was wiped with two consecutive smears (using a forensic swab) that were subjected to molecular analysis. The results demonstrate that eDNA from other organisms can be captured and persist on the fish skin mucus, posing a potential risk of contamination of faeces samples. Repeated wiping of mucus reduces or eliminates foreign DNA. This study provides new insights that can contribute to the development of the molecular methods, reducing the bias and increasing the accuracy of the diet spectrum analyses.
Key words: eDNA contamination / experiment / feeding ecology / fish / molecular approach
Note to the reader: The name of the author "Daniel Grulá" was a mistake and has been corrected in "Daniel Gruľa" on 23 June 2023.
© B. Števove et al., Published by EDP Sciences 2023
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License CC-BY-ND (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. If you remix, transform, or build upon the material, you may not distribute the modified material.
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