Transcriptome analysis of the immune reaction of the pearl oysterPinctada fucatato xenograft fromPinctada maxima

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The pearl oyster Pinctada maxima exhibits great difficulty to culture pearls through nuclear insertion with an allograft, but it is easy for P. fucata to culture pearls after allografting. If P. fucata could be used as a surrogate mother to culture P. maxima pearls, it would benefit the pearl culture industry of P. maxima. However, this is blocked by the immune rejection of P. fucata against P. maxima mantle grafts. In this study, the immune responses of P. fucata hemocyte to allograft and xenograft were investigated after transplantation by transcriptome analysis. In total, 107.93 Gb clean reads were produced and assembled using the reference genome of P. fucata. Gene Ontology Term enrichment and KEGG enrichment analyses indicated that apoptosis, hippo signaling pathway, oxidation-reduction, MAPK signaling pathway, ribosome, protein processing in endoplasmic reticulum, purine metabolism, NF-kappa B signaling pathway, oxidative phosphorylation, Ras signaling pathway, and ubiquitin mediated proteolysis were involved in response to transplantation. Many genes related to oxidation-reduction reactions, the MAPK signaling pathway, and apoptosis were identified by comparison of the allograft group and the xenograft group at 0 h, 6 h, 12 h, 24 h, 48 h, 72 h, and 96 h post-transplantation. Among them, the expression levels of NADH dehydrogenase, succinate dehydrogenase and other dehydrogenases were increased significantly in the xenograft groups compared with allograft groups at 0 h post transplantation, indicating that a respiratory burst of neutrophils occurred immediately after xenograft transplantation. Additionally, HSP70 was highly expressed from 0 h to 96 h in the xenograft groups, indicating an oyster immune response to the xenograft. The genes enriched in the ribosome and hippo-signaling pathways were also identified, and expression patterns of these DEGs were different as compared between transplantation and control groups. Finally, altered expression levels of 10 randomly selected immune-related DEGs were confirmed by quantitative real-time PCR. These results indicated that oxidation-reduction is likely the key factor responsible for immune rejection to transplantation. The findings should provide some new insight into the molecular mechanism of immune rejection of the host against xenograft, and thus benefit to development of immunosuppressive reagents to facilitate effective xenograft pearling.

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