Biology Data Business

Resource Center

The expert knowledge and results behind our innovative energy solutions

DNA is a widely available commercial diagnostic for the oil and gas industry, with its origins in monitoring microbially influenced corrosion (MIC) or H2S development via sulfate reducing bacteria (SRB). In practice, microbes are readily extractable from produced fluid samples owing to the high concentration of microbes (high biomass). However, the use of tracking DNA with well cuttings and cores is substantially more difficult due to drilling muds and the low concentration of microbes (low biomass) in those samples.

DNA Diagnostics Benefits

Enhancing your fluid movement diagnostics
Total Fluid Analysis

Total fluid movement of combined oil and water

Low Risk

Non-disruptive to well operations; no shutdown time, lost production or deployment of donwhole tools


Environmentally safe and friendly; low carbon footprint


Long-term monitoring with no sample storage

High Resolution

Unique fluid profiling by characterizing well cuttings and produced fluid


Field level analysis with 2 week turnaround on fluid results


Analysis integrated with type curves, logs, completion designs and operational events


A fraction of the cost of other diagnostics and affordable long term monitoring

The Biota Difference

Sample Stabilization

Biota’s proprietary Standard Operating Procedures (SOP’s) to capture cuttings and fluid samples reflect the extensive experience of having deployed the technology on 1,300+ wells. While cold storage and shipping of samples is commonly used, advanced sample stabilization methods are available for sample preservation.

Low Biomass Extraction, Sequencing, and QA/QC

Low biomass cuttings samples can harbor microbial biomass on the order of 50-100 genomes, and reagent microbes can dominate the downstream DNA marker sequences. The sequencing of negative extraction controls (NEC) allows for the identification of microbes that have metabolisms incompatible with the extreme subsurface environments. These reagent microbes can be dropped from samples computationally before performing downstream analysis.

Case Histories

  • EP Energy - Applying Subsurface DNA Sequencing in Wolfcamp Shales, Midland Basin (SPE-184869-MS)
  • Novo Oil and Gas - High Resolution Fluid Tracking from Verticals and Laterals Using Subsurface DNA Diagnostics in the Permian Basin (URTeC: 280)
  • Anadarko Petroleum Corporation - Applying Subsurface DNA Diagnostics and Data Science in the Delaware Basin (SPE-189846-MS)
  • Chaparral - Impact of Completion Design and Interwell Communication on Well Performance in Full Section Development: A STACK Case Study Using DNA Based Diagnostics (SPE-201726-MS, to be presented at ATCE 2020)
  • High Resolution Dynamic Drainage Height Estimations Using Subsurfacce DNA Diagnostics (SPE-195266-MS)
  • Improved Stacked Permian Development By Integrating DNA Diagnostics with Traditional Reservoir Analysis (SPE-201656-MS, to be presented at ATCE 2020)
  • Mature Fields - Optimizing Waterflood Management Through DNA Based Diagnostics (SPE-202912-MS, to be presented at ADIPEC 2020)

Biota in the News