Accessing the transcriptome: how to normalize mRNA pools.
ABSTRACT As advances in next generation sequencing continue to provide increasing access to the genomics -revolution for research systems having few or no genomic resources, transcriptome sequencing will only increase in importance as a fast and direct means of accessing the genes themselves. However, constructing a comprehensive cDNA library for deep sequencing is very difficult, as highly abundant transcripts hamper de novo identification of low-expressed genes, and genes expressed only under very specific conditions will remain elusive. The reduction of variance in gene expression levels to within a tenfold range of differences by cDNA normalization provides an important means of allocating sequencing across a greater fraction of genes, directly translating into a more even coverage across genes. Here, we outline two different normalization methods, addressing many of the important issues we think need consideration when going from RNA isolation to the cDNA material required for sequencing. This will provide coding gene information across thousands of genes from any organism, providing rapid insights into topics such as gene family member identification and genetic variation that may be associated with a studied phenotype.
- SourceAvailable from: Yannick Pauchet[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: The primary plant cell wall is a complex mixture of polysaccharides and proteins encasing living plant cells. Among these polysaccharides, cellulose is the most abundant and useful biopolymer present on earth. These polysaccharides also represent a rich source of energy for organisms which have evolved the ability to degrade them. A growing body of evidence suggests that phytophagous beetles, mainly species from the superfamilies Chrysomeloidea and Curculionoidea, possess endogenous genes encoding complex and diverse families of so-called plant cell wall degrading enzymes (PCWDEs). The presence of these genes in phytophagous beetles may have been a key element in their success as herbivores. Here, we combined a proteomics approach and transcriptome sequencing to identify PCWDEs present in larval gut contents of the mustard leaf beetle, Phaedon cochleariae. RESULTS: Using a two-dimensional proteomics approach, we recovered 11 protein bands, isolated using activity assays targeting cellulose-, pectin- and xylan-degrading enzymes. After mass spectrometry analyses, a total of 13 proteins putatively responsible for degrading plant cell wall polysaccharides were identified; these proteins belong to three glycoside hydrolase (GH) families: GH11 (xylanases), GH28 (polygalacturonases or pectinases), and GH45 (beta-1,4-glucanases or cellulases). Additionally, highly stable and proteolysis-resistant host plant-derived proteins from various pathogenesis-related protein (PRs) families as well as polygalacturonase-inhibiting proteins (PGIPs) were also identified from the gut contents proteome. In parallel, transcriptome sequencing revealed the presence of at least 19 putative PCWDE transcripts encoded by the P. cochleariae genome. All of these were specifically expressed in the insect gut rather than the rest of the body, and in adults as well as larvae. The discrepancy observed in the number of putative PCWDEs between transcriptome and proteome analyses could be partially explained by differences in transcriptional level. CONCLUSIONS: Combining proteome and transcriptome sequencing analyses proved to be a powerful tool for the discovery of active PCWDEs in a non-model species. Our data represent the starting point of an in-depth functional and evolutionary characterization of PCWDE gene families in phytophagous beetles and their contribution to the adaptation of these highly successful herbivores to their host plants.BMC Genomics 11/2012; 13(1):587. · 4.40 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: We have obtained and characterized the transcriptome of Spodoptera exigua larvae with special emphasis on pathogen-induced genes. In order to obtain a highly representative transcriptome, we have pooled RNA from diverse insect colonies, conditions and tissues. Sequenced cDNA included samples from 3 geographically different colonies. Enrichment of RNA from pathogen-related genes was accomplished by exposing larvae to different pathogenic and non-pathogenic microbial agents such as the bacteria Bacillus thuringiensis, Micrococcus luteus, and Escherichia coli, the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, and the S. exigua nucleopolyhedrovirus (SeMNPV). In addition, to avoid the loss of tissue-specific genes we included cDNA from the midgut, fat body, hemocytes and integument derived from pathogen exposed insects. RNA obtained from the different types of samples was pooled, normalized and sequenced. Analysis of the sequences obtained using the Roche 454 FLX and Sanger methods has allowed the generation of the largest public set of ESTs from S. exigua, including a large group of immune genes, and the identification of an important number of SSR (simple sequence repeats) and SNVs (single nucleotide variants: SNPs and INDELs) with potential use as genetic markers. Moreover, data mining has allowed the discovery of novel RNA viruses with potential influence in the insect population dynamics and the larval interactions with the microbial pesticides that are currently in use for the biological control of this pest.Insect biochemistry and molecular biology 04/2012; 42(8):557-70. · 3.25 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: The harlequin ladybird beetle Harmonia axyridis has emerged as a model species in invasion biology because of its strong resistance against pathogens and remarkable capacity to outcompete native ladybirds. The invasive success of the species may reflect its well-adapted immune system, a hypothesis we tested by analysing the transcriptome and characterizing the immune gene repertoire of untreated beetles and those challenged with bacteria and fungi. We found that most H. axyridis immunity-related genes were similar in diversity to their counterparts in the reference beetle Tribolium castaneum, but there was an unprecedented expansion among genes encoding antimicrobial peptides and proteins (AMPs). We identified more than 50 putative AMPs belonging to seven different gene families, and many of the corresponding genes were shown by quantitative real-time RT-PCR to be induced in the immune-stimulated beetles. AMPs with the highest induction ratio in the challenged beetles were shown to demonstrate broad and potent activity against Gram-negative bacteria and entomopathogenic fungi. The invasive success of H. axyridis can therefore be attributed at least in part to the greater efficiency of its immune system, particularly the expansion of AMP gene families and their induction in response to pathogens.Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 01/2013; 280(1750):20122113. · 5.68 Impact Factor