Rapid Acclimation Ability Mediated by Transcriptome Changes in Reef-Building Corals.
Bottom Line: For long-lived organisms, acclimation likely generates a faster response but is only effective if the rates and limits of acclimation match the dynamics of local environmental variation.This is in addition to a previously observed longer term response, distinguishable by its shift in baseline expression, under nonstressful conditions.Such rapid acclimation may provide some protection for this species of coral against slow onset of warming ocean temperatures.
Affiliation: Department of Biology, Stanford University firstname.lastname@example.org.Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus
Mentions: Although there were no differences in gene expression in corals exposed to different acclimation treatments before heat stress tests, gene expression was very different after acute heat stress. The permutational ANOVA highlighted 893 contigs showing expression levels after heat stress that differed between acclimation treatments (FDR corrected P < 0.01). Of these, 780 contigs could be clustered into two sets that each represented co-expressed genes varying across colonies and acclimation treatments (fig. 3). Co-expression of genes is often a result of shared regulatory mechanisms, for example, common transcription factors. The two clusters of genes in our data show precisely opposite patterns—while cluster 1 has decreased expression in acclimated samples, cluster 2 has increased expression—suggesting the regulatory control mechanism may be the same while the direction of expression change is opposite. We see a spike in expression of both clusters at day 2, which we attribute to stress after being transplanted. In both clusters, all acclimation treatments show similar expression levels at day 0, but by days 7 and 11, stable (31 °C) and variable (29–33 °C) acclimation treatments have diverged from the control acclimation treatment. Cluster 1 contains just 71 contigs, which were not significantly functionally enriched for any GO terms. Cluster 2 contains the majority of clustered contigs (709 contigs) and the GoEast analysis finds significant enrichment for GO terms related to carbohydrate metabolism and ribosomal RNA processing (supplementary table S1, Supplementary Material online).Fig. 3.—
Affiliation: Department of Biology, Stanford University email@example.com.