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Changes in the Organics Metabolism in the Hepatopancreas Induced by Eyestalk Ablation of the Chinese Mitten Crab Eriocheir sinensis Determined via Transcriptome and DGE Analysis

posted on 22.04.2014, 11:36 by Yan Sun, Yichen Zhang, Yichen Liu, Shuxia Xue, Xuyun Geng, Tong Hao, Jinsheng Sun


To understand the regulation mechanism of eyestalk ablation on the activities of hepatopancreas, Illumina RNA-Seq and digital gene expression (DGE) analyses were performed to investigate the transcriptome of the eyestalk, Y-organ, and hepatopancreas of E. sinensis and to identify the genes associated with the hepatopancreas metabolism that are differentially expressed under eyestalk ablation conditions.


A total of 58,582 unigenes were constructed from 157,168 contigs with SOAPdenovo. A BlastX search against the NCBI Nr database identified 21,678 unigenes with an E-value higher than 10−5. Using the BLAST2Go and BlastAll software programs, 6,883 unigenes (11.75% of the total) were annotated to the Gene Ontology (GO) database, 7,386 (12.6%) unigenes were classified into 25 Clusters of Orthologous Groups of Proteins (COGs), 16,200 (27.7%) unigenes were assigned to 242 Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathways, and1,846 unigenes were matched to “metabolism pathways”. The DGE analysis revealed that 1,416 unigenes were significantly differentially expressed in the hepatopancreas, of which 890 unigenes were up-regulated and 526 unigenes were down-regulated. Of the differentially expressed genes, 382 unigenes were annotated and 63 were classified into metabolism pathways. The results of the real-time polymerase chain reaction (PCR) analysis of four unigenes related to carbohydrate metabolism were consistent with those obtained from the DGE analysis, which demonstrates that the sequencing data were satisfactory for further gene expression analyses.


This paper reported the transcriptom of the eyestalk, Y-organ, and hepatopancreas from E. sinensis. DGE analysis provided the different expressed genes of the metabolism processes in hepatopancreas that are affected by eyestalk ablation. These findings will facilitate further investigations on the mechanisms of the metabolism of organic substances during development and reproduction in crustaceans.