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See detailAn efficient DNA isolation protocol for filamentous cyanobacteria of the genus Arthrospira
Morin, Nicolas ULg; Vallaeys, Tatiana; Hendrickx, Larissa et al

in Journal of Microbiological Methods (2010), 80

Thanks to their photosynthetic and nutritive properties, cyanobacteria of the Arthrospira genus are of interest as food supplements, as efficient oxygen producing life support system organisms for manned ... [more ▼]

Thanks to their photosynthetic and nutritive properties, cyanobacteria of the Arthrospira genus are of interest as food supplements, as efficient oxygen producing life support system organisms for manned space flight, and for the production of biofuels. Despite these potential valuable applications, full genome sequences and genetic information in general on Arthrospira remain scarce. This is mainly due to the difficulty to extract sufficient high molecular weight nucleic acids from these filamentous cyanobacteria. In this article, an efficient and reproducible DNA extraction procedure for cyanobacteria of the genus Arthrospira was developed. The method is based on the combination of a soft mechanical lysis with enzymatic disruption of the cell wall. The comparison with other extraction protocols clearly indicates that this optimised method allows the recovery of a larger amount of DNA. Furthermore, the extracted DNA presents a high molecular weight, a reduced degradation and an excellent overall quality. It can be directly used for molecular biology purposes such as PCR, and clone library construction. [less ▲]

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See detailMicrobial ecology of the closed artificial ecosystem MELiSSA (Micro-Ecological Life Support System Alternative): Reinventing and compartmentalizing the Earth's food and oxygen regeneration system for long-haul space exploration missions
Hendrickx, Larissa; De Wever, Heleen; Hermans, Veronik et al

in Research in Microbiology (2006), 157

MELiSSA is a bioregenerative life support system designed by the European Space Agency (ESA) for the complete recycling of gas, liquid and solid wastes during long distance space exploration. The system ... [more ▼]

MELiSSA is a bioregenerative life support system designed by the European Space Agency (ESA) for the complete recycling of gas, liquid and solid wastes during long distance space exploration. The system uses the combined activity of different living organisms: microbial cultures in bioreactors, a plant compartment and a human crew. In this minireview, the development of a short-cut ecological system for the biotransformation of organic waste is discussed from a microorganism's perspective. The artificial ecological model—still in full development—that is inspired by Earth's own geomicrobiological ecosystem serves as an ideal study object on microbial ecology and will become an indispensable travel companion in manned space exploration. [less ▲]

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