Molecular responses of an estuarine oyster to multiple metal contamination in Southern China revealed by RNA-seq

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

6 Scopus Citations
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Author(s)

  • Yunlong Li
  • Xinhui Zhang
  • Jie Meng
  • Jieming Chen
  • Xinxin You
  • Qiong Shi

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Article number134648
Journal / PublicationScience of the Total Environment
Volume701
Online published24 Oct 2019
Publication statusPublished - 20 Jan 2020
Externally publishedYes

Abstract

The estuarine oysters Crassostrea hongkongensis hyper-accumulate many metals and survive under high levels of metal exposure. In the present study, three natural populations of oysters with various levels of accumulated metals (mainly Cu and Zn) were collected from Southern China. The morphological characteristics and metal concentrations revealed their phenotypic differentiation. Further transcripts sequences acquired from their gill tissues were analyzed and 44,801 genes (with effective reads) were obtained via de novo assembly. The principal component analysis (PCA) revealed that the gene expression patterns also displayed differentiation among the three populations. A total of 3,199 differentially expressed genes (DEGs) was identified in the contaminated oysters as compared to the ‘clean’ oysters, which were used to explain the molecular mechanisms of metal accumulation and toxicity. GO and KEGG enrichment analysis revealed that energy production and cytoskeleton metabolism-related genes were particularly enriched in the contaminated sites during chronic metal exposure. Besides, increasing expressions of Zn/Cu transporters and metallothionein may explain their high accumulation in contaminated populations. We showed that oysters with less metal accumulation tended to cope with metal stress actively, but severe contamination destroyed part of the normal function. Our study analyzed the gene expression patterns of C. hongkongensis in Southern China and demonstrated the phenotypic differentiation of oysters under chronical metal exposure in the field.

Research Area(s)

  • Estuary, Field population, Metal contamination, Oysters

Citation Format(s)

Molecular responses of an estuarine oyster to multiple metal contamination in Southern China revealed by RNA-seq. / Li, Yunlong; Zhang, Xinhui; Meng, Jie; Chen, Jieming; You, Xinxin; Shi, Qiong; Wang, Wen-Xiong.

In: Science of the Total Environment, Vol. 701, 134648, 20.01.2020.

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review