October 23, 2019  |  

A high quality assembly of the Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) genome reveals the structure of two sex determination regions.

Tilapias are the second most farmed fishes in the world and a sustainable source of food. Like many other fish, tilapias are sexually dimorphic and sex is a commercially important trait in these fish. In this study, we developed a significantly improved assembly of the tilapia genome using the latest genome sequencing methods and show how it improves the characterization of two sex determination regions in two tilapia species.A homozygous clonal XX female Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) was sequenced to 44X coverage using Pacific Biosciences (PacBio) SMRT sequencing. Dozens of candidate de novo assemblies were generated and an optimal assembly (contig NG50 of 3.3Mbp) was selected using principal component analysis of likelihood scores calculated from several paired-end sequencing libraries. Comparison of the new assembly to the previous O. niloticus genome assembly reveals that recently duplicated portions of the genome are now well represented. The overall number of genes in the new assembly increased by 27.3%, including a 67% increase in pseudogenes. The new tilapia genome assembly correctly represents two recent vasa gene duplication events that have been verified with BAC sequencing. At total of 146Mbp of additional transposable element sequence are now assembled, a large proportion of which are recent insertions. Large centromeric satellite repeats are assembled and annotated in cichlid fish for the first time. Finally, the new assembly identifies the long-range structure of both a ~9Mbp XY sex determination region on LG1 in O. niloticus, and a ~50Mbp WZ sex determination region on LG3 in the related species O. aureus.This study highlights the use of long read sequencing to correctly assemble recent duplications and to characterize repeat-filled regions of the genome. The study serves as an example of the need for high quality genome assemblies and provides a framework for identifying sex determining genes in tilapia and related fish species.


October 23, 2019  |  

Alternative splicing profile and sex-preferential gene expression in the female and male Pacific abalone Haliotis discus hannai.

In order to characterize the female or male transcriptome of the Pacific abalone and further increase genomic resources, we sequenced the mRNA of full-length complementary DNA (cDNA) libraries derived from pooled tissues of female and male Haliotis discus hannai by employing the Iso-Seq protocol of the PacBio RSII platform. We successfully assembled whole full-length cDNA sequences and constructed a transcriptome database that included isoform information. After clustering, a total of 15,110 and 12,145 genes that coded for proteins were identified in female and male abalones, respectively. A total of 13,057 putative orthologs were retained from each transcriptome in abalones. Overall Gene Ontology terms and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathways analyzed in each database showed a similar composition between sexes. In addition, a total of 519 and 391 isoforms were genome-widely identified with at least two isoforms from female and male transcriptome databases. We found that the number of isoforms and their alternatively spliced patterns are variable and sex-dependent. This information represents the first significant contribution to sex-preferential genomic resources of the Pacific abalone. The availability of whole female and male transcriptome database and their isoform information will be useful to improve our understanding of molecular responses and also for the analysis of population dynamics in the Pacific abalone.


October 23, 2019  |  

The genome of common long-arm octopus Octopus minor.

The common long-arm octopus (Octopus minor) is found in mudflats of subtidal zones and faces numerous environmental challenges. The ability to adapt its morphology and behavioral repertoire to diverse environmental conditions makes the species a promising model for understanding genomic adaptation and evolution in cephalopods.The final genome assembly of O. minor is 5.09 Gb, with a contig N50 size of 197 kb and longest size of 3.027 Mb, from a total of 419 Gb raw reads generated using the Pacific Biosciences RS II platform. We identified 30,010 genes; 44.43% of the genome is composed of repeat elements. The genome-wide phylogenetic tree indicated the divergence time between O. minor and Octopus bimaculoides was estimated to be 43 million years ago based on single-copy orthologous genes. In total, 178 gene families are expanded in O. minor in the 14 bilaterian species.We found that the O. minor genome was larger than that of closely related O. bimaculoides, and this difference could be explained by enlarged introns and recently diversified transposable elements. The high-quality O. minor genome assembly provides a valuable resource for understanding octopus genome evolution and the molecular basis of adaptations to mudflats.


October 23, 2019  |  

Chromosomal-level assembly of yellow catfish genome using third-generation DNA sequencing and Hi-C analysis.

The yellow catfish, Pelteobagrus fulvidraco, belonging to the Siluriformes order, is an economically important freshwater aquaculture fish species in Asia, especially in Southern China. The aquaculture industry has recently been facing tremendous challenges in germplasm degeneration and poor disease resistance. As the yellow catfish exhibits notable sex dimorphism in growth, with adult males about two- to three-fold bigger than females, the way in which the aquaculture industry takes advantage of such sex dimorphism is another challenge. To address these issues, a high-quality reference genome of the yellow catfish would be a very useful resource.To construct a high-quality reference genome for the yellow catfish, we generated 51.2 Gb short reads and 38.9 Gb long reads using Illumina and Pacific Biosciences (PacBio) sequencing platforms, respectively. The sequencing data were assembled into a 732.8 Mb genome assembly with a contig N50 length of 1.1 Mb. Additionally, we applied Hi-C technology to identify contacts among contigs, which were then used to assemble contigs into scaffolds, resulting in a genome assembly with 26 chromosomes and a scaffold N50 length of 25.8 Mb. Using 24,552 protein-coding genes annotated in the yellow catfish genome, the phylogenetic relationships of the yellow catfish with other teleosts showed that yellow catfish separated from the common ancestor of channel catfish ~81.9 million years ago. We identified 1,717 gene families to be expanded in the yellow catfish, and those gene families are mainly enriched in the immune system, signal transduction, glycosphingolipid biosynthesis, and fatty acid biosynthesis.Taking advantage of Illumina, PacBio, and Hi-C technologies, we constructed the first high-quality chromosome-level genome assembly for the yellow catfish P. fulvidraco. The genomic resources generated in this work not only offer a valuable reference genome for functional genomics studies of yellow catfish to decipher the economic traits and sex determination but also provide important chromosome information for genome comparisons in the wider evolutionary research community.


September 22, 2019  |  

Membrane attack complex-associated molecules from redlip mullet (Liza haematocheila): Molecular characterization and transcriptional evidence of C6, C7, C8ß, and C9 in innate immunity.

The redlip mullet (Liza haematocheila) is one of the most economically important fish in Korea and other East Asian countries; it is susceptible to infections by pathogens such as Lactococcus garvieae, Argulus spp., Trichodina spp., and Vibrio spp. Learning about the mechanisms of the complement system of the innate immunity of redlip mullet is important for efforts towards eradicating pathogens. Here, we report a comprehensive study of the terminal complement complex (TCC) components that form the membrane attack complex (MAC) through in-silico characterization and comparative spatial and temporal expression profiling. Five conserved domains (TSP1, LDLa, MACPF, CCP, and FIMAC) were detected in the TCC components, but the CCP and FIMAC domains were absent in MuC8ß and MuC9. Expression analysis of four TCC genes from healthy redlip mullets showed the highest expression levels in the liver, whereas limited expression was observed in other tissues; immune-induced expression in the head kidney and spleen revealed significant responses against Lactococcus garvieae and poly I:C injection, suggesting their involvement in MAC formation in response to harmful pathogenic infections. Furthermore, the response to poly I:C may suggest the role of TCC components in the breakdown of the membrane of enveloped viruses. These findings may help to elucidate the mechanisms behind the complement system of the teleosts innate immunity. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


September 22, 2019  |  

Two phospholipid scramblase 1-related proteins (PLSCR1like-a & -b) from Liza haematocheila: Molecular and transcriptional features and expression analysis after immune stimulation.

Phospholipid scramblases (PLSCRs) are a family of transmembrane proteins known to be responsible for Ca2+-mediated bidirectional phospholipid translocation in the plasma membrane. Apart from the scrambling activity of PLSCRs, recent studies revealed their diverse other roles, including antiviral defense, tumorigenesis, protein-DNA interactions, apoptosis regulation, and cell activation. Nonetheless, the biological and transcriptional functions of PLSCRs in fish have not been discovered to date. Therefore, in this study, two new members related to the PLSCR1 family were identified in the red lip mullet (Liza haematocheila) as MuPLSCR1like-a and MuPLSCR1like-b, and their characteristics were studied at molecular and transcriptional levels. Sequence analysis revealed that MuPLSCR1like-a and MuPLSCR1like-b are composed of 245 and 228 amino acid residues (aa) with the predicted molecular weights of 27.82 and 25.74?kDa, respectively. A constructed phylogenetic tree showed that MuPLSCR1like-a and MuPLSCR1like-b are clustered together with other known PLSCR1 and -2 orthologues, thus pointing to the relatedness to both PLSCR1 and PLSCR2 families. Two-dimensional (2D) and 3D graphical representations illustrated the well-known 12-stranded ß-barrel structure of MuPLSCR1like-a and MuPLSCR1like-b with transmembrane orientation toward the phospholipid bilayer. In analysis of tissue-specific expression, the highest expression of MuPLSCR1like-a was observed in the intestine, whereas MuPLSCR1like-b was highly expressed in the brain, indicating isoform specificity. Of note, we found that the transcription of MuPLSCR1like-a and MuPLSCR1like-b was significantly upregulated when the fish were stimulated with poly(I:C), suggesting that such immune responses target viral infections. Overall, this study provides the first experimental insight into the characteristics and immune-system relevance of PLSCR1-related genes in red lip mullets. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


September 22, 2019  |  

Characterization of four C1q/TNF-related proteins (CTRPs) from red-lip mullet (Liza haematocheila) and their transcriptional modulation in response to bacterial and pathogen-associated molecular pattern stimuli.

The structural and evolutionary linkage between tumor necrosis factor (TNF) and the globular C1q (gC1q) domain defines the C1q and TNF-related proteins (CTRPs), which are involved in diverse functions such as immune defense, inflammation, apoptosis, autoimmunity, and cell differentiation. In this study, red-lip mullet (Liza haematocheila) CTRP4-like (MuCTRP4-like), CTRP5 (MuCTRP5), CTRP6 (MuCTRP6), and CTRP7 (MuCTRP7) were identified from the red-lip mullet transcriptome database and molecularly characterized. According to in silico analysis, coding sequences of MuCTRP4-like, MuCTRP5, MuCTRP6, and MuCTRP7 consisted of 1128, 753, 729, and 888 bp open reading frames (ORF), respectively and encoded 375, 250, 242, and 295 amino acids, respectively. All CTRPs possessed a putative C1q domain. Additionally, MuCTRP5, MuCTRP6, and MuCTRP7 consisted of a collagen region. Phylogenetic analysis exemplified that MuCTRPs were distinctly clustered with the respective CTRP orthologs. Tissue-specific expression analysis demonstrated that MuCTRP4-like was mostly expressed in the blood and intestine. Moreover, MuCTRP6 was highly expressed in the blood, whereas MuCTRP5 and MuCTRP7 were predominantly expressed in the muscle and stomach, respectively. According to the temporal expression in blood, all MuCTRPs exhibited significant modulations in response to polyinosinic:polycytidylic acid (poly I:C) and Lactococcus garvieae (L. garvieae). MuCTRP4-like, MuCTRP5, and MuCTRP6 showed significant upregulation in response to lipopolysaccharides (LPS). The results of this study suggest the potential involvement of Mullet CTRPs in post-immune responses. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.


September 22, 2019  |  

Identification and characterization of a carboxypeptidase N1 from red lip mullet (Liza haematocheila); revealing its immune relevance.

Complement system orchestrates the innate and adaptive immunity via the activation, recruitment, and regulation of immune molecules to destroy pathogens. However, regulation of the complement is essential to avoid injuries to the autologous tissues. The present study unveils the characteristic features of an important complement component, anaphylatoxin inactivator from red lip mullet at its molecular and functional level. Mullet carboxypeptidase N1 (MuCPN1) cDNA sequence possessed an open reading frame of 1347 bp, which encoded a protein of 449 amino acids with a predicted molecular weight of 51?kDa. In silico analysis discovered two domains of PM14-Zn carboxypeptidase and a C-terminal domain of M14 N/E carboxypeptidase, two zinc-binding signature motifs, and an N-glycosylation site in the MuCPN1 sequence. Homology analysis revealed that most of the residues in the sequence are conserved among the other selected homologs. Phylogeny analysis showed that MuCPN1 closely cladded with the Maylandia zebra CPN1 and clustered together with the teleostean counterparts. A challenge experiment showed modulated expression of MuCPN1 upon polyinosinic:polycytidylic acid and Lactococcus garviae in head kidney, spleen, gill, and liver tissues. The highest upregulation of MuCPN1 was observed 24?h post infection against poly I:C in each tissue. Moreover, the highest relative expressions upon L. garviae challenge were observed at 24?h post infection in head kidney tissue and 48?h post infection in spleen, gill, and liver tissues. MuCPN1 transfected cells triggered a 2.2-fold increase of nitric oxide (NO) production upon LPS stimulation compared to the un-transfected controls suggesting that MuCPN1 is an active protease which releases arginine from complement C3a, C4a, and C5a. These results have driven certain way towards enhancing the understanding of immune role of MuCPN1 in the complement defense mechanism of red lip mullet. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


September 22, 2019  |  

Molecular genetic diversity and characterization of conjugation genes in the fish parasite Ichthyophthirius multifiliis.

Ichthyophthirius multifiliis is the etiologic agent of “white spot”, a commercially important disease of freshwater fish. As a parasitic ciliate, I. multifiliis infects numerous host species across a broad geographic range. Although Ichthyophthirius outbreaks are difficult to control, recent sequencing of the I. multifiliis genome has revealed a number of potential metabolic pathways for therapeutic intervention, along with likely vaccine targets for disease prevention. Nonetheless, major gaps exist in our understanding of both the life cycle and population structure of I. multifiliis in the wild. For example, conjugation has never been described in this species, and it is unclear whether I. multifiliis undergoes sexual reproduction, despite the presence of a germline micronucleus. In addition, no good methods exist to distinguish strains, leaving phylogenetic relationships between geographic isolates completely unresolved. Here, we compared nucleotide sequences of SSUrDNA, mitochondrial NADH dehydrogenase subunit I and cox-1 genes, and 14 somatic SNP sites from nine I. multifiliis isolates obtained from four different states in the US since 1995. The mitochondrial sequences effectively distinguished the isolates from one another and divided them into at least two genetically distinct groups. Furthermore, none of the nine isolates shared the same composition of the 14 somatic SNP sites, suggesting that I. multifiliis undergoes sexual reproduction at some point in its life cycle. Finally, compared to the well-studied free-living ciliates Tetrahymena thermophila and Paramecium tetraurelia, I. multifiliis has lost 38% and 29%, respectively, of 16 experimentally confirmed conjugation-related genes, indicating that mechanistic differences in sexual reproduction are likely to exist between I. multifiliis and other ciliate species. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


September 22, 2019  |  

Bacterial community structure in simultaneous nitrification, denitrification and organic matter removal process treating saline mustard tuber wastewater as revealed by 16S rRNA sequencing.

A simultaneous nitrification, denitrification and organic matter removal (SNDOR) process in sequencing batch biofilm reactor (SBBR) was established to treat saline mustard tuber wastewater (MTWW) in this study. An average COD removal efficiency of 86.48% and total nitrogen removal efficiency of 86.48% were achieved at 30gNaClL(-1) during 100days’ operation. The underlying mechanisms were investigated by PacBio SMRT DNA sequencing (V1-V9) to analyze the microbial community structures and its variation from low salinity at 10gNaClL(-1) to high salinity at 30gNaClL(-1). Results showed elevated salinity did not affect biological performance but reduced microbial diversity in SBBR, and halophilic bacteria gradually predominated by succession. Despite of high C/N, autotrophic ammonia-oxidizing bacteria (AOB) Nitrosomonas and ammonia-oxidizing archaea (AOA) Candidatus Nitrososphaera both contributed to ammonium oxidation. As salinity increasing, nitrite-oxidizing bacteria (NOB) were significantly inhibited, partial nitrification and denitrification (PND) process gradually contributed to nitrogen removal. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


September 22, 2019  |  

Evaluating the mobility potential of antibiotic resistance genes in environmental resistomes without metagenomics.

Antibiotic resistance genes are ubiquitous in the environment. However, only a fraction of them are mobile and able to spread to pathogenic bacteria. Until now, studying the mobility of antibiotic resistance genes in environmental resistomes has been challenging due to inadequate sensitivity and difficulties in contig assembly of metagenome based methods. We developed a new cost and labor efficient method based on Inverse PCR and long read sequencing for studying mobility potential of environmental resistance genes. We applied Inverse PCR on sediment samples and identified 79 different MGE clusters associated with the studied resistance genes, including novel mobile genetic elements, co-selected resistance genes and a new putative antibiotic resistance gene. The results show that the method can be used in antibiotic resistance early warning systems. In comparison to metagenomics, Inverse PCR was markedly more sensitive and provided more data on resistance gene mobility and co-selected resistances.


September 22, 2019  |  

Full-length transcriptome of Misgurnus anguillicaudatus provides insights into evolution of genus Misgurnus.

Reconstruction and annotation of transcripts, particularly for a species without reference genome, plays a critical role in gene discovery, investigation of genomic signatures, and genome annotation in the pre-genomic era. This study generated 33,330 full-length transcripts of diploid M. anguillicaudatus using PacBio SMRT Sequencing. A total of 6,918 gene families were identified with two or more isoforms, and 26,683 complete ORFs with an average length of 1,497?bp were detected. Totally, 1,208 high-confidence lncRNAs were identified, and most of these appeared to be precursor transcripts of miRNAs or snoRNAs. Phylogenetic tree of the Misgurnus species was inferred based on the 1,905 single copy orthologous genes. The tetraploid and diploid M. anguillicaudatus grouped into a clade, and M. bipartitus showed a closer relationship with the M. anguillicaudatus. The overall evolutionary rates of tetraploid M. anguillicaudatus were significantly higher than those of other Misgurnus species. Meanwhile, 28 positively selected genes were identified in M. anguillicaudatus clade. These positively selected genes may play critical roles in the adaptation to various habitat environments for M. anguillicaudatus. This study could facilitate further exploration of the genomic signatures of M. anguillicaudatus and provide potential insights into unveiling the evolutionary history of tetraploid loach.


September 22, 2019  |  

Extensive horizontal gene transfer in cheese-associated bacteria.

Acquisition of genes through horizontal gene transfer (HGT) allows microbes to rapidly gain new capabilities and adapt to new or changing environments. Identifying widespread HGT regions within multispecies microbiomes can pinpoint the molecular mechanisms that play key roles in microbiome assembly. We sought to identify horizontally transferred genes within a model microbiome, the cheese rind. Comparing 31 newly sequenced and 134 previously sequenced bacterial isolates from cheese rinds, we identified over 200 putative horizontally transferred genomic regions containing 4733 protein coding genes. The largest of these regions are enriched for genes involved in siderophore acquisition, and are widely distributed in cheese rinds in both Europe and the US. These results suggest that HGT is prevalent in cheese rind microbiomes, and that identification of genes that are frequently transferred in a particular environment may provide insight into the selective forces shaping microbial communities.


September 22, 2019  |  

A manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD) from red lip mullet, Liza haematocheila: Evaluation of molecular structure, immune response, and antioxidant function.

Manganese superoxide dismutase (MnSOD) is a nuclear-encoded antioxidant metalloenzyme. The main function of this enzyme is to dismutase the toxic superoxide anion (O2-) into less toxic hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) and oxygen (O2). Structural analysis of mullet MnSOD (MuMnSOD) was performed using different bioinformatics tools. Pairwise alignment revealed that the protein sequence matched to that derived from Larimichthys crocea with a 95.2% sequence identity. Phylogenetic tree analysis showed that the MuMnSOD was included in the category of teleosts. Multiple sequence alignment showed that a SOD Fe-N domain, SOD Fe-C domain, and Mn/Fe SOD signature were highly conserved among the other examined MnSOD orthologs. Quantitative real-time PCR showed that the highest MuMnSOD mRNA expression level was in blood cells. The highest expression level of MuMnSOD was observed in response to treatment with both Lactococcus garvieae and lipopolysaccharide (LPS) at 6?h post treatment in the head kidney and blood. Potential ROS-scavenging ability of the purified recombinant protein (rMuMnSOD) was examined by the xanthine oxidase assay (XOD assay). The optimum temperature and pH for XOD activity were found to be 25?°C and pH 7, respectively. Relative XOD activity was significantly increased with the dose of rMuMnSOD, revealing its dose dependency. Activity of rMuMnSOD was inhibited by potassium cyanide (KCN) and N-N’-diethyl-dithiocarbamate (DDC). Moreover, expression of MuMnSOD resulted in considerable growth retardation of both gram-positive and gram-negative bacteria. Results of the current study suggest that MuMnSOD acts as an antioxidant enzyme and participates in the immune response in mullet. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


September 22, 2019  |  

The microbiota of freshwater fish and freshwater niches contain omega-3 producing Shewanella species.

Approximately 30 years ago, it was discovered that free-living bacteria isolated from cold ocean depths could produce polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) (20:5n-3) or docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) (22:6n-3), two PUFA essential for human health. Numerous laboratories have also discovered that EPA- and/or DHA-producing bacteria, many of them members of the Shewanella genus, could be isolated from the intestinal tracts of omega-3 fatty acid-rich marine fish. If bacteria contribute omega-3 fatty acids to the host fish in general or if they assist some bacterial species in adaptation to cold, then cold freshwater fish or habitats should also harbor these producers. Thus, we undertook a study to see if these niches also contained omega-3 fatty acid producers. We were successful in isolating and characterizing unique EPA-producing strains of Shewanella from three strictly freshwater native fish species, i.e., lake whitefish (Coregonus clupeaformis), lean lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush), and walleye (Sander vitreus), and from two other freshwater nonnative fish, i.e., coho salmon (Oncorhynchus kisutch) and seeforellen brown trout (Salmo trutta). We were also able to isolate four unique free-living strains of EPA-producing Shewanella from freshwater habitats. Phylogenetic and phenotypic analyses suggest that one producer is clearly a member of the Shewanella morhuae species and another is sister to members of the marine PUFA-producing Shewanella baltica species. However, the remaining isolates have more ambiguous relationships, sharing a common ancestor with non-PUFA-producing Shewanella putrefaciens isolates rather than marine S. baltica isolates despite having a phenotype more consistent with S. baltica strains. Copyright © 2015, American Society for Microbiology. All Rights Reserved.


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