W031 Short-Read Sequencing Used for Genomic Characterization in Aquacultured Shellfish

Date: Saturday, January 14, 2012
Time: 8:55 AM
Room: Royal Palm Salons 3-4
Steven Roberts , University of Washington, Seattle, WA
Advances in sequencing technology provide new opportunities to explore functional genomics in commercially important molluscs, especially those with limited sequence information. In order to better understand immune function and disease tolerance in these shellfish, short-read sequencing technologies (i.e. SOLiD, Solexa) were used to examine differential gene expression in discreet populations of oysters, abalone, and clams. A suite of sequencing efforts have been completed that include the characterization of: 1) disease-tolerant, wild populations of hard clams and black abalone challenged with pathogens, 2) manila clams subjected to altered water chemistry, and 3) Pacific oysters grown in environments with varying levels of anthropogenic impacts.  In addition to characterizing transcriptome differences within these groups, we have also used short-read sequencing to examine variation in genomic DNA from hosts and pathogens to assist in identifying markers for superior performing shellfish, as well as to better understand pathogen virulence. These combined data reveal gene expression patterns that are correlated with an effective immune response and provide insight into functional genetic variation that could be incorporated into aquaculture practices to improve production. Results from these sequencing efforts that utilize different technologies and different experimental designs will be presented. Furthermore, advantages and challenges associated with using short-read sequencing for functional genomic analyses in aquacultured shellfish will be discussed.