Parasitology Research

, Volume 113, Issue 3, pp 881–892 | Cite as

Transcriptome profilings of female Schistosoma japonicum reveal significant differential expression of genes after pairing

  • Jun SunEmail author
  • Su-Wen Wang
  • Chen Li
  • Wei Hu
  • Yi-Jiu Ren
  • Jin-Qiang Wang
Original Paper


Pairing of Schistosoma japonicum initiates female development, leads to female sexual maturation, and maintains this mature state. To understand the mechanism involved in these processes, we studied parasites isolated from single- and double-sex cercariae-infected mice using deep-sequencing analysis, Solexa, to uncover pair-regulated transcriptional profiles. In this study, we report the results of high-throughput tag-sequencing (Tag-seq) analysis of the transcriptome of female worms 18 and 23 days postsingle- and double-sex infections. We sequenced over 3 million tags, obtained a total of 14,034, 27,251, 22,755, and 22,555 distinct tags corresponding to 5,773, 9,794, 8,885, and 8,870 tag-mapped genes for 23-day-old female schistosomula from double-sex infections (23DSI), 23-day-old female schistosomula from single-sex infections (23SSI), 18-day-old female schistosomula from double-sex infections (18DSI), and 18-day-old female schistosomula from single-sex infections (18SSI), respectively. Analyses of differentially expressed genes revealed similarities in the gene expression profiles between 18SSI and 18DSI as well as rational differential gene expression between 18SSI and 23SSI. However, fewer upregulated genes were found in 23DSI compared with 18DSI. Of the 3,446 differentially expressed genes between 23DSI and 23SSI, 2,913 genes were upregulated in 23SSI, whereas only 533 genes were upregulated in 23DSI. In these upregulated genes in 23DSI, phosphoglycerate mutase, superoxide dismutase, egg antigen, ribosomal proteins, ferritin-1 heavy chain, and eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2 were detected. Detection of these genes suggests that gene expression in 23DSI is specialized for functions such as promotion and maintenance of female sexual maturation and egg production. Quantitative real-time (RT)-PCR analysis confirmed the Solexa results, thereby supporting the reliability of the system. Our results offer new insights into the biological significance of pairing, which directs the expression of genes specific for sexual maturation and egg production.


Digital Gene Expression Female Worm Phosphoglycerate Mutase Vitelline Gland Digital Gene Expression Library 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We would like to thank Pan W.Q. for his valuable advice. We are grateful for discussions and comments from Xiao S.H., Zhang Q.F., and Xu X.D. This research was supported by the National Natural Science Foundation of China (no. 81071383).

Supplementary material

436_2013_3719_MOESM1_ESM.xlsx (650 kb)
Supplementary Table 1 Differentially expressed genes between the 18DSI and 18SSI libraries (XLSX 649 kb)
436_2013_3719_MOESM2_ESM.xlsx (321 kb)
Supplementary Table 2 Differentially expressed genes between the 23DSI and 23SSI libraries (XLSX 320 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jun Sun
    • 1
    Email author
  • Su-Wen Wang
    • 1
  • Chen Li
    • 1
  • Wei Hu
    • 2
  • Yi-Jiu Ren
    • 1
  • Jin-Qiang Wang
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute for Infectious Diseases and Vaccine DevelopmentTongji University School of MedicineShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.Department of Microbiology and Microbial EngineeringSchool of Life Science, Fudan UniversityShanghaiPeople’s Republic of China

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