PloS one

Transcriptome sequencing and analysis of leaf tissue of Avicennia marina using the Illumina platform.

PMID 25265387


Avicennia marina is a widely distributed mangrove species that thrives in high-salinity habitats. It plays a significant role in supporting coastal ecosystem and holds unique potential for studying molecular mechanisms underlying ecological adaptation. Despite and sometimes because of its numerous merits, this species is facing increasing pressure of exploitation and deforestation. Both study on adaptation mechanisms and conservation efforts necessitate more genomic resources for A. marina. In this study, we used Illumina sequencing of an A. marina foliar cDNA library to generate a transcriptome dataset for gene and marker discovery. We obtained 40 million high-quality reads and assembled them into 91,125 unigenes with a mean length of 463 bp. These unigenes covered most of the publicly available A. marina Sanger ESTs and greatly extended the repertoire of transcripts for this species. A total of 54,497 and 32,637 unigenes were annotated based on homology to sequences in the NCBI non-redundant and the Swiss-prot protein databases, respectively. Both Gene Ontology (GO) analysis and Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) pathway analysis revealed some transcriptomic signatures of stress adaptation for this halophytic species. We also detected an extraordinary amount of transcripts derived from fungal endophytes and demonstrated the utility of transcriptome sequencing in surveying endophyte diversity without isolating them out of plant tissues. Additionally, we identified 3,423 candidate simple sequence repeats (SSRs) from 3,141 unigenes with a density of one SSR locus every 8.25 kb sequence. Our transcriptomic data will provide valuable resources for ecological, genetic and evolutionary studies in A. marina.