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PNAS:DNA测序可能有助于解释珊瑚对气候变化的适应力

来源:EurekAlert!中文 2013-01-08 15:37

一项研究说,先进的DNA测序技术可能有助于科研人员探明哪种珊瑚更有可能比其他珊瑚在未来的全球气候变化中生存下来。近来的研究已经证明了某些珊瑚能比其他一些珊瑚更好地承受环境压力,诸如珊瑚白化,但是这种适应力增强的基础尚不清楚。Daniel J. Barshis及其同事选择了两个珊瑚种群,其中一个对温度变化敏感,而另一个对温度变化有适应力,他们比较了这些生物的基因表达并且发现了在这两个种群中,热应力改变了数百种基因的表达。这组作者然后确定具有适应力的珊瑚在正常环境下高度表达了60种基因。其中某些基因编码的蛋白质起到了一种“前置”保护作用,这些蛋白质参与了已知的耐热机制,包括热激蛋白和抗氧化酶,以及其他与免疫应答有关的蛋白质。这组作者提出,这一组基因可能保护那些常常遇到会带来压力的环境变化的珊瑚。制造珊瑚礁的珊瑚已经在全世界衰退,人们预计它们将随着气候变化的加剧而面临急剧的流失。这组作者说,这些发现证明了DNA测序可以提供对某些生物如何应对未来全球气候变化的见解。(生物谷Bioon.com)

Genomic basis for coral resilience to climate change

Daniel J. Barshis1,2, Jason T. Ladner, Thomas A. Oliver, François O. Seneca, Nikki Traylor-Knowles, and Stephen R. Palumbi

Recent advances in DNA-sequencing technologies now allow for in-depth characterization of the genomic stress responses of many organisms beyond model taxa. They are especially appropriate for organisms such as reef-building corals, for which dramatic declines in abundance are expected to worsen as anthropogenic climate change intensifies. Different corals differ substantially in physiological resilience to environmental stress, but the molecular mechanisms behind enhanced coral resilience remain unclear. Here, we compare transcriptome-wide gene expression (via RNA-Seq using Illumina sequencing) among conspecific thermally sensitive and thermally resilient corals to identify the molecular pathways contributing to coral resilience. Under simulated bleaching stress, sensitive and resilient corals change expression of hundreds of genes, but the resilient corals had higher expression under control conditions across 60 of these genes. These “frontloaded” transcripts were less up-regulated in resilient corals during heat stress and included thermal tolerance genes such as heat shock proteins and antioxidant enzymes, as well as a broad array of genes involved in apoptosis regulation, tumor suppression, innate immune response, and cell adhesion. We propose that constitutive frontloading enables an individual to maintain physiological resilience during frequently encountered environmental stress, an idea that has strong parallels in model systems such as yeast. Our study provides broad insight into the fundamental cellular processes responsible for enhanced stress tolerances that may enable some organisms to better persist into the future in an era of global climate change.

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