Characterizing long non-coding RNA in the Asian Citrus Psyllid through genome annotation and molecular biology

Recent work by the Heck and Mueller labs identified 83 differentially expressed long non-coding RNAs in the gut of adult ACPs, when exposed to CLas as nymphs, through multi-omics[3]. Long non-coding RNA (lncRNA) are noncoding RNAs that are >=200 nucleotides in length and have poor coding potential. LncRNAs have also been shown to have important functions, such as gene regulation, messenger RNA processing, and genome integrity[4-6]. In total, 15,000 transcripts were detected, with only 2,000 differentially expressed transcripts. Since 83 of those 2,000 were lncRNAs, there is evidence to support the fact that lncRNAs play an important but yet undiscovered role in the response to CLas infection.

Goal: Identify and characterize lncRNA in the psyllid genome to better understand the relationship between the vector ACP and the pathogen CLas.

Objectives:
- Detect the presence of lncRNA in ACP nymphs
- Identify a set of lncRNA in the ACP genome that can then be used for manual curation.