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Molecular methods

This course explains the process and execution of DNA extraction and qPCR and amplicon sequencing for microbial identification in wastewater systems. It includes three videos and a textbook chapter that can be accessed free of charge at this webpage.

Course Info

  • About

    This course focuses on the process and execution of DNA extraction and qPCR and amplicon sequencing for microbial identification in wastewater systems. The course is designed for both academics and practitioners, including graduate and postgraduate students, researchers, laboratory staff, plant operators, consultants, and other sector professionals with a background in sanitary, civil, environmental or (bio)chemical engineering, environmental biotechnology or biochemistry. As the course is at graduate level, participants with knowledge of and experience with the basic concepts of biological wastewater treatment will particularly benefit from it.

  • Syllabus

    The following topics are part of the course:

    • Extraction of DNA;
    • Real-time quantitative PCR;
    • Amplicon sequencing;
    • Other methods.

    For a detailed table of contents please click here.

  • Objectives │ Activities │ Assessment

    Learning objectives, activities and assessment depend on the delivery mode of the course. In general, learning objectives are more complex for instructor-led courses. This is particularly true for on campus courses and tailored training because they allow for guided, hands on, laboratory exercises and assignments. To view the learning objectives, activities and assessment of this course please click here.

  • Contact


DNA extraction

A standard protocol for DNA extraction is illustrated in this video as an essential step prior to conducting microbial composition analyses using DNA sequencing.

1 of 3

Real time qPCR

Specific DNA species can be sensitively quantified by applying the real-time quantitative PCR (qPCR) technique illustrated in this video.

2 of 3

Amplicon sequencing

This video shows how to conduct 16S rRNA amplicon sequencing which allows the identification of bacteria with high resolution and throughput.

3 of 3

Download the chapter

Molecular methods (2.1 MB)

Available in English, Spanish and Croatian. Coming soon in Russian, Hindi, Marathi and Tamil.

Molecular methods

This chapter is an integral part of the textbook Experimental Methods in Wastewater Treatment. It is a complementary part of the course curriculum and includes background information on the processes of interest, details on experimental set-ups, preparation and execution, as well as a results discussion and interpretation, accompanied with examples and additional information. The book is also used for teaching the MSc specialization in Sanitary Engineering at IHE Delft and several other universities worldwide. It is the product of collaborative efforts by research groups and practitioners around the world. You can download your free copy of the book in one of currently available languages.
  • Van Loosdrecht M.C.M., Nielsen P.H, Lopez-Vazquez C.M., Brdjanovic D. Ed. (2016) Experimental Methods in Wastewater Treatment. IWA Publising, pg. 350, ISBN 9781780404745 (Hardback) 9781780404752 (eBook)