A Rapid Throughput Method to Extract DNA from Formalin-Fixed Paraffin-Embedded Tissues for Biomonitoring Carcinogenic DNA Adducts

Byeong Hwa Yun, Shun Xiao, Lihua Yao, Sesha Krishnamachari, Thomas A. Rosenquist, Kathleen G. Dickman, Arthur P. Grollman, Paari Murugan, Christopher J. Weight, Robert J. Turesky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


Formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) tissues are rarely used for screening DNA adducts of carcinogens because the harsh conditions required to reverse the formaldehyde-mediated DNA cross-links can destroy DNA adducts. We recently adapted a commercial silica-based column kit used in genomics to manually isolate DNA under mild conditions from FFPE tissues of rodents and humans and successfully measured DNA adducts of several carcinogens including aristolochic acid I (AA-I), 4-aminobiphenyl (4-ABP), and 2-amino-1-methyl-6-phenylimidazo[4,5-b]pyridine (PhIP) (Yun et al. (2013) Anal. Chem. 85, 4251-8, and Guo et al. (2016) Anal. Chem. 88, 4780-7). The DNA retrieval methodology is robust; however, the procedure is time-consuming and labor intensive, and not amenable to rapid throughput processing. In this study, we have employed the Promega Maxwell 16 MDx system, which is commonly used in large scale genomics studies, for the rapid throughput extraction of DNA. This system streamlines the DNA isolation procedure and increases the sample processing rate by about 8-fold over the manual method (32 samples versus 4 samples processed per hour). High purity DNA is obtained in satisfactory yield for the measurements of DNA adducts by ultra performance liquid chromatography-electrospray-ionization-ion trap-multistage scan mass spectrometry. The measurements show that the levels of DNA adducts of AA-I, 4-ABP, and PhIP in FFPE rodent and human tissues are comparable to those levels measured in DNA from matching tissues isolated by the commercial silica-based column kits and in DNA from fresh frozen tissues isolated by the conventional phenol-chloroform extraction method. The isolation of DNA from tissues is one major bottleneck in the analysis of DNA adducts. This rapid throughput methodology greatly decreases the time required to process DNA and can be employed in large-scale epidemiology studies designed to assess the role of chemical exposures and DNA adducts in cancer risk.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2130-2139
Number of pages10
JournalChemical research in toxicology
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 18 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
*E-mail: rturesky@umn.edu. Phone: 612-626-0141. ORCID Robert J. Turesky: 0000-0001-7355-9903 Funding This research was supported by Grant No. R01ES019564 (R.J.T.) from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, R01CA122320 (R.J.T.), and R01 CA220367 (R.J.T. and T.A.R.), and R33CA186795 (R.J.T.) from the National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health, and from Henry and Marsha Laufer (A.P.G., K.G.D., and T.A.R.). Mass spectrometry was carried out in Analytical Biochemistry Shared Resources of the Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota, funded in part by Cancer Center Support Grant No. CA-077598. Notes The authors declare no competing financial interest.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 American Chemical Society.


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