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De Novo Transcriptome Assembly and Gene Expression Profiling of the Copepod Calanus helgolandicus Feeding on the PUA-Producing Diatom Skeletonema marinoi

Authors
  • Asai, Sneha1
  • Sanges, Remo1, 2
  • Lauritano, Chiara3
  • Lindeque, Penelope K.
  • Esposito, Francesco3
  • Ianora, Adrianna3
  • Carotenuto, Ylenia1
  • 1 (R.S.)
  • 2 Area of Neuroscience, Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati (SISSA), 34136 Trieste, Italy
  • 3 (A.I.)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Marine Drugs
Publisher
MDPI AG
Publication Date
Jul 27, 2020
Volume
18
Issue
8
Identifiers
DOI: 10.3390/md18080392
PMID: 32727111
PMCID: PMC7460014
Source
PubMed Central
Keywords
License
Green

Abstract

Diatoms are the dominant component of the marine phytoplankton. Several diatoms produce secondary metabolites, namely oxylipins, with teratogenic effects on their main predators, crustacean copepods. Our study reports the de novo assembled transcriptome of the calanoid copepod Calanus helgolandicus feeding on the oxylipin-producing diatom Skeletonema marinoi . Differential expression analysis was also performed between copepod females exposed to the diatom and the control flagellate Prorocentrum minimum , which does not produce oxylipins. Our results showed that transcripts involved in carbohydrate, amino acid, folate and methionine metabolism, embryogenesis, and response to stimulus were differentially expressed in the two conditions. Expression of 27 selected genes belonging to these functional categories was also analyzed by RT-qPCR in C. helgolandicus females exposed to a mixed solution of the oxylipins heptadienal and octadienal at the concentration of 10 µM, 15 µM, and 20 µM. The results confirmed differential expression analysis, with up-regulation of genes involved in stress response and down-regulation of genes associated with folate and methionine metabolism, embryogenesis, and signaling. Overall, we offer new insights on the mechanism of action of oxylipins on maternally-induced embryo abnormality. Our results may also help identify biomarker genes associated with diatom-related reproductive failure in the natural copepod population at sea.

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