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1.  Generation of a reference transcriptome for evaluating rainbow trout responses to various stressors 
BMC Genomics  2011;12:626.
Fish under intensive culture conditions are exposed to a variety of acute and chronic stressors, including high rearing densities, sub-optimal water quality, and severe thermal fluctuations. Such stressors are inherent in aquaculture production and can induce physiological responses with adverse effects on traits important to producers and consumers, including those associated with growth, nutrition, reproduction, immune response, and fillet quality. Understanding and monitoring the biological mechanisms underlying stress responses will facilitate alleviating their negative effects through selective breeding and changes in management practices, resulting in improved animal welfare and production efficiency.
Physiological responses to five treatments associated with stress were characterized by measuring plasma lysozyme activity, glucose, lactate, chloride, and cortisol concentrations, in addition to stress-associated transcripts by quantitative PCR. Results indicate that the fish had significant stressor-specific changes in their physiological conditions. Sequencing of a pooled normalized transcriptome library created from gill, brain, liver, spleen, kidney and muscle RNA of control and stressed fish produced 3,160,306 expressed sequence tags which were assembled and annotated. SNP discovery resulted in identification of ~58,000 putative single nucleotide polymorphisms including 24,479 which were predicted to fall within exons. Of these, 4907 were predicted to occupy the first position of a codon and 4110 the second, increasing the probability to impact amino acid sequence variation and potentially gene function.
We have generated and characterized a reference transcriptome for rainbow trout that represents multiple tissues responding to multiple stressors common to aquaculture production environments. This resource compliments existing public transcriptome data and will facilitate approaches aiming to evaluate gene expression associated with stress in this species.
PMCID: PMC3305546  PMID: 22188770
2.  A first generation integrated map of the rainbow trout genome 
BMC Genomics  2011;12:180.
Rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) are the most-widely cultivated cold freshwater fish in the world and an important model species for many research areas. Coupling great interest in this species as a research model with the need for genetic improvement of aquaculture production efficiency traits justifies the continued development of genomics research resources. Many quantitative trait loci (QTL) have been identified for production and life-history traits in rainbow trout. An integrated physical and genetic map is needed to facilitate fine mapping of QTL and the selection of positional candidate genes for incorporation in marker-assisted selection (MAS) programs for improving rainbow trout aquaculture production.
The first generation integrated map of the rainbow trout genome is composed of 238 BAC contigs anchored to chromosomes of the genetic map. It covers more than 10% of the genome across segments from all 29 chromosomes. Anchoring of 203 contigs to chromosomes of the National Center for Cool and Cold Water Aquaculture (NCCCWA) genetic map was achieved through mapping of 288 genetic markers derived from BAC end sequences (BES), screening of the BAC library with previously mapped markers and matching of SNPs with BES reads. In addition, 35 contigs were anchored to linkage groups of the INRA (French National Institute of Agricultural Research) genetic map through markers that were not informative for linkage analysis in the NCCCWA mapping panel. The ratio of physical to genetic linkage distances varied substantially among chromosomes and BAC contigs with an average of 3,033 Kb/cM.
The integrated map described here provides a framework for a robust composite genome map for rainbow trout. This resource is needed for genomic analyses in this research model and economically important species and will facilitate comparative genome mapping with other salmonids and with model fish species. This resource will also facilitate efforts to assemble a whole-genome reference sequence for rainbow trout.
PMCID: PMC3079668  PMID: 21473775
3.  Characterization of the rainbow trout transcriptome using Sanger and 454-pyrosequencing approaches 
BMC Genomics  2010;11:564.
Rainbow trout are important fish for aquaculture and recreational fisheries and serves as a model species for research investigations associated with carcinogenesis, comparative immunology, toxicology and evolutionary biology. However, to date there is no genome reference sequence to facilitate the development of molecular technologies that utilize high-throughput characterizations of gene expression and genetic variation. Alternatively, transcriptome sequencing is a rapid and efficient means for gene discovery and genetic marker development. Although a large number (258,973) of EST sequences are publicly available, the nature of rainbow trout duplicated genome hinders assembly and complicates annotation.
High-throughput deep sequencing of the Swanson rainbow trout doubled-haploid transcriptome using 454-pyrosequencing technology yielded ~1.3 million reads with an average length of 344 bp, a total of 447 million bases. De novo assembly of the sequences yielded 151,847 Tentative Consensus (TC) sequences (average length of 662 bp) and 224,391 singletons. A combination assembly of both the 454-pyrosequencing ESTs and the pre-existing sequences resulted in 161,818 TCs (average length of 758 bp) and 261,071 singletons. Gene Ontology analysis of the combination assembly showed high similarities to transcriptomes of other fish species with known genome sequences.
The 454 library significantly increased the suite of ESTs available for rainbow trout, allowing improved assembly and annotation of the transcriptome. Furthermore, the 454 sequencing enables functional genome research in rainbow trout, providing a wealth of sequence data to serve as a reference transcriptome for future studies including identification of paralogous sequences and/or allelic variation, digital gene expression and proteomic research.
PMCID: PMC3091713  PMID: 20942956
4.  Single nucleotide polymorphism discovery in rainbow trout by deep sequencing of a reduced representation library 
BMC Genomics  2009;10:559.
To enhance capabilities for genomic analyses in rainbow trout, such as genomic selection, a large suite of polymorphic markers that are amenable to high-throughput genotyping protocols must be identified. Expressed Sequence Tags (ESTs) have been used for single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) discovery in salmonids. In those strategies, the salmonid semi-tetraploid genomes often led to assemblies of paralogous sequences and therefore resulted in a high rate of false positive SNP identification. Sequencing genomic DNA using primers identified from ESTs proved to be an effective but time consuming methodology of SNP identification in rainbow trout, therefore not suitable for high throughput SNP discovery. In this study, we employed a high-throughput strategy that used pyrosequencing technology to generate data from a reduced representation library constructed with genomic DNA pooled from 96 unrelated rainbow trout that represent the National Center for Cool and Cold Water Aquaculture (NCCCWA) broodstock population.
The reduced representation library consisted of 440 bp fragments resulting from complete digestion with the restriction enzyme HaeIII; sequencing produced 2,000,000 reads providing an average 6 fold coverage of the estimated 150,000 unique genomic restriction fragments (300,000 fragment ends). Three independent data analyses identified 22,022 to 47,128 putative SNPs on 13,140 to 24,627 independent contigs. A set of 384 putative SNPs, randomly selected from the sets produced by the three analyses were genotyped on individual fish to determine the validation rate of putative SNPs among analyses, distinguish apparent SNPs that actually represent paralogous loci in the tetraploid genome, examine Mendelian segregation, and place the validated SNPs on the rainbow trout linkage map. Approximately 48% (183) of the putative SNPs were validated; 167 markers were successfully incorporated into the rainbow trout linkage map. In addition, 2% of the sequences from the validated markers were associated with rainbow trout transcripts.
The use of reduced representation libraries and pyrosequencing technology proved to be an effective strategy for the discovery of a high number of putative SNPs in rainbow trout; however, modifications to the technique to decrease the false discovery rate resulting from the evolutionary recent genome duplication would be desirable.
PMCID: PMC2790473  PMID: 19939274
5.  A first generation BAC-based physical map of the rainbow trout genome 
BMC Genomics  2009;10:462.
Rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) are the most-widely cultivated cold freshwater fish in the world and an important model species for many research areas. Coupling great interest in this species as a research model with the need for genetic improvement of aquaculture production efficiency traits justifies the continued development of genomics research resources. Many quantitative trait loci (QTL) have been identified for production and life-history traits in rainbow trout. A bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) physical map is needed to facilitate fine mapping of QTL and the selection of positional candidate genes for incorporation in marker-assisted selection (MAS) for improving rainbow trout aquaculture production. This resource will also facilitate efforts to obtain and assemble a whole-genome reference sequence for this species.
The physical map was constructed from DNA fingerprinting of 192,096 BAC clones using the 4-color high-information content fingerprinting (HICF) method. The clones were assembled into physical map contigs using the finger-printing contig (FPC) program. The map is composed of 4,173 contigs and 9,379 singletons. The total number of unique fingerprinting fragments (consensus bands) in contigs is 1,185,157, which corresponds to an estimated physical length of 2.0 Gb. The map assembly was validated by 1) comparison with probe hybridization results and agarose gel fingerprinting contigs; and 2) anchoring large contigs to the microsatellite-based genetic linkage map.
The production and validation of the first BAC physical map of the rainbow trout genome is described in this paper. We are currently integrating this map with the NCCCWA genetic map using more than 200 microsatellites isolated from BAC end sequences and by identifying BACs that harbor more than 300 previously mapped markers. The availability of an integrated physical and genetic map will enable detailed comparative genome analyses, fine mapping of QTL, positional cloning, selection of positional candidate genes for economically important traits and the incorporation of MAS into rainbow trout breeding programs.
PMCID: PMC2763887  PMID: 19814815
6.  A salmonid EST genomic study: genes, duplications, phylogeny and microarrays 
BMC Genomics  2008;9:545.
Salmonids are of interest because of their relatively recent genome duplication, and their extensive use in wild fisheries and aquaculture. A comprehensive gene list and a comparison of genes in some of the different species provide valuable genomic information for one of the most widely studied groups of fish.
298,304 expressed sequence tags (ESTs) from Atlantic salmon (69% of the total), 11,664 chinook, 10,813 sockeye, 10,051 brook trout, 10,975 grayling, 8,630 lake whitefish, and 3,624 northern pike ESTs were obtained in this study and have been deposited into the public databases. Contigs were built and putative full-length Atlantic salmon clones have been identified. A database containing ESTs, assemblies, consensus sequences, open reading frames, gene predictions and putative annotation is available. The overall similarity between Atlantic salmon ESTs and those of rainbow trout, chinook, sockeye, brook trout, grayling, lake whitefish, northern pike and rainbow smelt is 93.4, 94.2, 94.6, 94.4, 92.5, 91.7, 89.6, and 86.2% respectively. An analysis of 78 transcript sets show Salmo as a sister group to Oncorhynchus and Salvelinus within Salmoninae, and Thymallinae as a sister group to Salmoninae and Coregoninae within Salmonidae. Extensive gene duplication is consistent with a genome duplication in the common ancestor of salmonids. Using all of the available EST data, a new expanded salmonid cDNA microarray of 32,000 features was created. Cross-species hybridizations to this cDNA microarray indicate that this resource will be useful for studies of all 68 salmonid species.
An extensive collection and analysis of salmonid RNA putative transcripts indicate that Pacific salmon, Atlantic salmon and charr are 94–96% similar while the more distant whitefish, grayling, pike and smelt are 93, 92, 89 and 86% similar to salmon. The salmonid transcriptome reveals a complex history of gene duplication that is consistent with an ancestral salmonid genome duplication hypothesis. Genome resources, including a new 32 K microarray, provide valuable new tools to study salmonids.
PMCID: PMC2628678  PMID: 19014685
7.  Effect of starvation on global gene expression and proteolysis in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) 
BMC Genomics  2007;8:328.
Fast, efficiently growing animals have increased protein synthesis and/or reduced protein degradation relative to slow, inefficiently growing animals. Consequently, minimizing the energetic cost of protein turnover is a strategic goal for enhancing animal growth. Characterization of gene expression profiles associated with protein turnover would allow us to identify genes that could potentially be used as molecular biomarkers to select for germplasm with improved protein accretion.
We evaluated changes in hepatic global gene expression in response to 3-week starvation in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss). Microarray analysis revealed a coordinated, down-regulated expression of protein biosynthesis genes in starved fish. In addition, the expression of genes involved in lipid metabolism/transport, aerobic respiration, blood functions and immune response were decreased in response to starvation. However, the microarray approach did not show a significant increase of gene expression in protein catabolic pathways. Further studies, using real-time PCR and enzyme activity assays, were performed to investigate the expression of genes involved in the major proteolytic pathways including calpains, the multi-catalytic proteasome and cathepsins. Starvation reduced mRNA expression of the calpain inhibitor, calpastatin long isoform (CAST-L), with a subsequent increase in the calpain catalytic activity. In addition, starvation caused a slight but significant increase in 20S proteasome activity without affecting mRNA levels of the proteasome genes. Neither the mRNA levels nor the activities of cathepsin D and L were affected by starvation.
These results suggest a significant role of calpain and 20S proteasome pathways in protein mobilization as a source of energy during fasting and a potential association of the CAST-L gene with fish protein accretion.
PMCID: PMC2040161  PMID: 17880706
8.  Genomic structure and expression of uncoupling protein 2 genes in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) 
BMC Genomics  2006;7:203.
Uncoupling protein 2 (UCP2) belongs to the superfamily of mitochondrial anion carriers that dissociate the respiratory chain from ATP synthesis. It has been determined that UCP2 plays a role in several physiological processes such as energy expenditure, body weight control and fatty acid metabolism in several vertebrate species. We report the first characterization of UCP2s in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss).
Two UCP2 genes were identified in the rainbow trout genome, UCP2A and UCP2B. These genes are 93% similar in their predicted amino acid sequences and display the same genomic structure as other vertebrates (8 exons and 7 introns) spanning 4.2 kb and 3.2 kb, respectively. UCP2A and UCP2B were widely expressed in all tissues of the study with a predominant level in macrophage-rich tissues and reproductive organs. In fry muscle we observed an increase in UCP2B expression in response to fasting and a decrease after refeeding in agreement with previous studies in human, mouse, rat, and marsupials. The converse expression pattern was observed for UCP2A mRNA which decreased during fasting, suggesting different metabolic roles for UCP2A and UCP2B in rainbow trout muscle. Phylogenetic analysis including other genes from the UCP core family located rainbow trout UCP2A and UCP2B with their orthologs and suggested an early divergence of vertebrate UCPs from a common ancestor gene.
We characterized two UCP2 genes in rainbow trout with similar genomic structures, amino acid sequences and distribution profiles. These genes appeared to be differentially regulated in response to fasting and refeeding in fry muscle. The genomic organization and phylogeny analysis support the hypothesis of a common ancestry between the vertebrate UCPs.
PMCID: PMC1559616  PMID: 16899121
9.  Comparative mapping of expressed sequence tags containing microsatellites in rainbow trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) 
BMC Genomics  2005;6:54.
Comparative genomics, through the integration of genetic maps from species of interest with whole genome sequences of other species, will facilitate the identification of genes affecting phenotypes of interest. The development of microsatellite markers from expressed sequence tags will serve to increase marker densities on current salmonid genetic maps and initiate in silico comparative maps with species whose genomes have been fully sequenced.
Eighty-nine polymorphic microsatellite markers were generated for rainbow trout of which at least 74 amplify in other salmonids. Fifty-five have been associated with functional annotation and 30 were mapped on existing genetic maps. Homologous sequences were identified for 20 of the EST containing microsatellites to identify comparative assignments within the tetraodon, mouse, and/or human genomes.
The addition of microsatellite markers constructed from expressed sequence tag data will facilitate the development of high-density genetic maps for rainbow trout and comparative maps with other salmonids and better studied species.
PMCID: PMC1090573  PMID: 15836796
10.  Gene expression in the brain and kidney of rainbow trout in response to handling stress 
BMC Genomics  2005;6:3.
Microarray technologies are rapidly becoming available for new species including teleost fishes. We constructed a rainbow trout cDNA microarray targeted at the identification of genes which are differentially expressed in response to environmental stressors. This platform included clones from normalized and subtracted libraries and genes selected through functional annotation. Present study focused on time-course comparisons of stress responses in the brain and kidney and the identification of a set of genes which are diagnostic for stress response.
Fish were stressed with handling and samples were collected 1, 3 and 5 days after the first exposure. Gene expression profiles were analysed in terms of Gene Ontology categories. Stress affected different functional groups of genes in the tissues studied. Mitochondria, extracellular matrix and endopeptidases (especially collagenases) were the major targets in kidney. Stress response in brain was characterized with dramatic temporal alterations. Metal ion binding proteins, glycolytic enzymes and motor proteins were induced transiently, whereas expression of genes involved in stress and immune response, cell proliferation and growth, signal transduction and apoptosis, protein biosynthesis and folding changed in a reciprocal fashion. Despite dramatic difference between tissues and time-points, we were able to identify a group of 48 genes that showed strong correlation of expression profiles (Pearson r > |0.65|) in 35 microarray experiments being regulated by stress. We evaluated performance of the clone sets used for preparation of microarray. Overall, the number of differentially expressed genes was markedly higher in EST than in genes selected through Gene Ontology annotations, however 63% of stress-responsive genes were from this group.
1. Stress responses in fish brain and kidney are different in function and time-course. 2. Identification of stress-regulated genes provides the possibility for measuring stress responses in various conditions and further search for the functionally related genes.
PMCID: PMC545953  PMID: 15634361

Results 1-10 (10)