Data from: A broadly applicable COI primer pair and an efficient single‐tube amplicon library preparation protocol for metabarcoding
Rennstam Rubbmark, Oskar; Sint, Daniela; Horngacher, Nina; Traugott, Michael (2019), Data from: A broadly applicable COI primer pair and an efficient single‐tube amplicon library preparation protocol for metabarcoding, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.5jq5t36
The nucleotide variation in the cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (COI) gene makes it ideal for assigning sequences to species. However, this variability also makes it difficult to design truly universal primers. Here, we present the forward primer “Sauron-S878”, specifically designed to facilitate library preparation for metabarcoding. This primer is modified to improve the coverage of terrestrial species compared to the primer mCOIintF, optimized for aquatic systems, which raised the in-silico coverage from 74.4% to 98.3% of available NCBI sequences (perfect match in 3’-region, up to 3 mismatches in remaining primer). When paired with the reverse primer “jgHCO2198” (fragment length ~313 bp) these primers amplified 98.4% of 255 tested DNA extracts from various taxa, which is better than many other common COI barcoding primers. Furthermore, a single tube protocol was developed, wherein these primers amplify the target gene, and attach MIDs and Illumina sequencing adapters in one reaction. This eliminates the need for re-amplification or enzymatic ligation during library preparation while keeping the flexibility to modularly combine primers and MIDs. Using the single tube approach, three replicates of three mock samples were sequenced on a MiSeq platform with no adverse effects compared to commercial Nextera indexing kits. From this run 75% of all included taxa could be recovered, with no considerable bias among taxonomic groups. Despite the fact that 98.4% of the extracts were confirmed to amplify in-vitro, this number was lower than expected. A reason for this discrepancy was a clear link between the relative concentration of a specific DNA type in the template and the number of returned reads for this DNA. We would argue that such a bias may be especially problematic in metabarcoding where samples usually contain trace DNA in unknown amounts. However, how this affects the completeness of metabarcoding results has yet been poorly investigated.