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RNA-seq Provides Novel Insights into Response to Acute Salinity Stress in Oriental River Prawn Macrobrachium nipponense


The oriental river prawn Macrobrachium nipponense is an important aquaculture species in China, Vietnam, and Japan. This species could survive in the salinity ranging from 7 to 20 ppt and accelerate growth in the salinity of 7 ppt. To identify the genes and pathways in response to acute high salinity stress, M. nipponense was exposed to the acute high salinity of 25 ppt. Total RNA from hepatopancreas, gills, and muscle tissues was isolated and then sequenced using high-throughput sequencing method. Differentially expressed genes (DGEs) were identified, and a total of 632, 836, and 1246 DEGs with a cutoff of significant twofold change were differentially expressed in the hepatopancreas, gills, and muscle tissues, respectively. Gene ontology (GO) and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genome pathway enrichment analyses were conducted. These DEGs were involved in the GO terms of cellular process, metabolic process, membrane, organelle, binding, and catalytic activity. The DEGs of hepatopancreas and gill tissues were mainly enriched in PPAR signaling pathway, longevity regulating pathway, protein digestion and absorption, and the DEGs of muscle tissue in arginine biosynthesis, adrenergic signaling in cardiomyocytes, cardiac muscle contraction, and cGMP-PKG signaling pathway. Real-time PCR conducted with fifteen selected DEGs indicated high reliability of digital analysis using RNA-Seq. The results indicated that the M. nipponense may regulate essential mechanisms such as metabolism, oxidative stress, and ion exchange to adapt the alternation of environment, when exposed to acute high salinity stress. This work reveals the numbers of genes modified by salinity stress and some important pathways, which could provide a comprehensive insight into the molecular responses to high salinity stress in M. nipponense and further boost the understanding of the potential molecular mechanisms of adaptation to salinity stress for euryhaline crustaceans.

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This work was supported by the Innovation Action Plan project of the Science and Technology Commission of Shanghai Municipality (19391900900, 21002410500), Guangdong Provincial Key R&D Program.

(2020B0202010001), and Special Fund for Science and Technology Development of Shanghai Ocean University.

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Jianbin Feng and Jiale Li conceptualized the study. Yaoran Fan, Feiyue Ling, Zefei Wang, and Xie Nan collected the specimens and experimented. Yaoran Fan performed the qRT-PCR and bioinformatics work. Yaoran Fan and Jianbin Feng participated in the formal analysis of the results. Yaoran Fan drafted the manuscript. Jianbin Feng, Xueming Hua, and Keyi Ma critically evaluated and approved the article.

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Correspondence to Jiale Li.

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Yaoran Fan and Jianbin Feng contributed equally to this study.

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Fan, Y., Feng, J., Xie, N. et al. RNA-seq Provides Novel Insights into Response to Acute Salinity Stress in Oriental River Prawn Macrobrachium nipponense. Mar Biotechnol 24, 820–829 (2022).

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  • Macrobrachium nipponense
  • RNA-seq
  • Acute high salinity stress
  • Differentially expressed gene
  • KEGG pathway