Aim: The placenta is an informative and easily available tissue for many epidemiological studies. We analyzed the extent to which storage delay affects DNA methylation. Material & methods: Biopsies from two placentas were sequentially stored at-80°C after standing at room temperature for 30 min, 1 h, 2 h, 6 h and 24 h. Global DNA methylation was measured by bisulfite pyrosequencing of repetitive elements and the luminometric methylation assay. Results: Small changes in global DNA methylation in relation to time-to-storage were observed by pyrosequencing, with a coefficient of variation (COV) of 2.49% (placenta 1) and 2.86% (placenta 2), similar to the mean technical variation observed for pyrosequencing (COV: 1.91 and 1.51%, respectively). A luminometric methylation assay yielded more variable results in the two placentas analyzed, both among time points (COV: 9.13 and 10.35%, respectively) and technical replicates (COV: 11.60 and 9.80%, respectively). Conclusion: Global DNA methylation is stable at room temperature. However, some techniques to measure methylation might be confounded by DNA degradation caused by a delay in storage.
- cohort study
- DNA methylation stability
- luminometric methylation assay
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research