Crossing phenotype heritability and candidate gene expression in grafted black-lipped pearl oyster Pinctada margaritifera, an animal chimera

Type Article
Date 2018-07
Language English
Author(s) Blay Carole1, 2, Planes Serge2, Ky Chin-Long1
Affiliation(s) 1 : IFREMER, UMR EIO 241, Labex Corail, Ctr Pacifique, BP49, F-98719 Tahiti, French Polynesi, France.
2 : Univ Perpignan, PSL Res Univ, EPHE UPVD CNRS, Labex Corail,USR CRIOBE 3278, 52 Ave Paul Alduy, F-66860 Perpignan, France.
Source Journal Of Heredity (0022-1503) (Oxford Univ Press Inc), 2018-07 , Vol. 109 , N. 5 , P. 510-519
DOI 10.1093/jhered/esy015
WOS© Times Cited 5
Keyword(s) gene expression, heritability, pearl oyster, phenotype, Pinctada margaritifera

Grafting mantle tissue of a donor pearl oyster into the gonad of a recipient oyster results in the formation of a chimera, the pearl sac. The phenotypic variations of this chimera are hypothesized to be the result of interactions between the donor and recipient genomes. In this study, the heritability of phenotypic variation and its association with gene expression were investigated for the first time during P. margaritifera pearl production. Genetic variance was evaluated at different levels, 1) before the graft operation (expression in graft tissue), 2) after grafting (pearl sac tissue expression in chimera) and 3) on the product of the graft (pearl phenotype traits) based on controlled bi-parental crosses and the F1 generation. Donor related genetic parameter estimates clearly demonstrate heritability for nacre weight and thickness, darkness and colour, surface defects and grade, which signifies a genetic basis in the donor oyster. In graft relative gene expression, the value of heritability was superior to 0.20 in for almost all genes, while in pearl sac, heritability estimates were low (h² < 0.10) (except for CALC1 and Aspein). Pearl sac expression seems to be more influenced by residual variance than the graft, which can be explained by environmental effects that influence pearls sac gene expression and act as a recipient additive genetic component. The interactions between donor and recipient are very complex and further research is required to understand the role of the recipient oysters on pearl phenotypic and gene expression variances.

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