Assessment of DNA encapsulation, a new room-temperature DNA storage method

Biopreserv Biobank. 2014 Jun;12(3):176-83. doi: 10.1089/bio.2013.0082.


A new procedure for room-temperature storage of DNA was evaluated whereby DNA samples from human tissue, bacteria, and plants were stored under an anoxic and anhydrous atmosphere in small glass vials fitted in stainless-steel, laser-sealed capsules (DNAshells(®)). Samples were stored in DNAshells(®) at room temperature for various periods of time to assess any degradation and compare it to frozen control samples and those stored in GenTegra™ tubes. The study included analysis of the effect of accelerated aging by using a high temperature (76°C) at 50% relative humidity. No detectable DNA degradation was seen in samples stored in DNAshells(®) at room temperature for 18 months. Polymerase chain reaction experiments, pulsed field gel electrophoresis, and amplified fragment length polymorphism analyses also demonstrated that the protective properties of DNAshells(®) are not affected by storage under extreme conditions (76°C, 50% humidity) for 30 hours, guaranteeing 100 years without DNA sample degradation. However, after 30 hours of storage at 76°C, it was necessary to include adjustments to the process in order to avoid DNA loss. Successful protection of DNA was obtained for 1 week and even 1 month of storage at high temperature by adding trehalose, which provides a protective matrix. This study demonstrates the many advantages of using DNAshells(®) for room-temperature storage, particularly in terms of long-term stability, safety, transport, and applications for molecular biology research.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bacteria / genetics
  • Capsules / chemistry
  • DNA / analysis*
  • DNA / drug effects
  • Hot Temperature
  • Humans
  • Humidity
  • Plants / genetics
  • Preservation, Biological / methods*
  • Protective Agents / pharmacology
  • Specimen Handling / methods
  • Time Factors
  • Trehalose / pharmacology


  • Capsules
  • Protective Agents
  • DNA
  • Trehalose