Transcriptome sequencing of the blind subterranean mole rat, Spalax galili: Utility and potential for the discovery of novel evolutionary patterns

Assaf Malik, Abraham Korol, Sariel Hübner, Alvaro G. Hernandez, Jyothi Thimmapuram, Shahjahan Ali, Fabian Glaser, Arnon Paz, Aaron Avivi, Mark Band

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The blind subterranean mole rat (Spalax ehrenbergi superspecies) is a model animal for survival under extreme environments due to its ability to live in underground habitats under severe hypoxic stress and darkness. Here we report the transcriptome sequencing of Spalax galili, a chromosomal type of S. ehrenbergi. cDNA pools from muscle and brain tissues isolated from animals exposed to hypoxic and normoxic conditions were sequenced using Sanger, GS FLX, and GS FLX Titanium technologies. Assembly of the sequences yielded over 51,000 isotigs with homology to ~12,000 mouse, rat or human genes. Based on these results, it was possible to detect large numbers of splice variants, SNPs, and novel transcribed regions. In addition, multiple differential expression patterns were detected between tissues and treatments. The results presented here will serve as a valuable resource for future studies aimed at identifying genes and gene regions evolved during the adaptive radiation associated with underground life of the blind mole rat.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere21227
JournalPloS one
Volume6
Issue number8
DOIs
StatePublished - 2011

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • General

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