Environmental studies are primarily done by culturing isolated microorganisms or by amplifying and sequencing conserved genes. Difficulties understanding the complexity of large numbers of various microorganisms in an environment led to the development of techniques to enrich specific microorganisms for upstream analysis, ultimately leading to single-cell isolation and analyses. We discuss the significance of single-cell technologies in omics studies with focus on metagenomics and metatranscriptomics. We propose that by reducing sample heterogeneity using single-cell genomics, metaomic studies can be simplified.
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