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Seasonal transcriptomes of the Antarctic pteropod, Limacina helicina antarctica
- Johnson, Kevin M., Wong, Juliet M., Hoshijima, Umihiko, Sugano, Cailan S., Hofmann, Gretchen E.
- Marine environmental research 2019 v.143 pp. 49-59
- DNA repair, DNA replication, cytoskeleton, gametogenesis, gene expression, gene expression regulation, genes, genomics, glycolysis, ice, ion transport, latitude, ocean acidification, oceans, overwintering, spring, summer, transcriptome, transcriptomics, Antarctic region
- High latitude seas will be among the first marine systems to be impacted by ocean acidification (OA). Previous research studying the effects of OA on the pteropod, Limacina helicina antarctica, has led this species to be identified as a sentinel organism for OA in polar oceans. Here, we present gene expression data on L. h. antarctica, collected in situ during the seasonal transition from early spring to early summer. Our findings suggest that after over-wintering under seasonal sea ice, pteropods progress toward full maturity in the early summer when food becomes increasingly available. This progression is highlighted by a dramatic shift in gene expression that supports the development of cytoskeletal structures, membrane ion transportation, and metabolically important enzymes associated with glycolysis. In addition, we observed signs of defense of genomic integrity and maturation as evidenced by an up-regulation of genes involved in DNA replication, DNA repair, and gametogenesis. These data contribute to a broader understanding of the life-cycle dynamics for L. h. antarctica and provide key insights into the transcriptomic signals of pteropod maturation and growth during this key seasonal transition.