Genomics and transcriptomics across the diversity of the Nematoda

M Blaxter, S Kumar, G Kaur, G Koutsovoulos, B Elsworth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The diversity of biology in nematodes is reflected in the diversity of their genomes. Parasitic species in particular have evolved mechanisms to invade and outwit their hosts, and these offer opportunities for the development of control measures. Genomic analyses can reveal the molecular underpinnings of phenotypes such as parasitism and thus, initiate and support research programmes that explore the manipulation of host and parasite physiologies to achieve favourable outcomes. Wide sampling across nematode diversity allows phylogenetically informed formulation of research hypotheses, identification of core features shared by all species or important evolutionary novelties present in isolated clades. Many nematode species have been investigated through the use of the expressed sequence tag approach, which samples from the transcribed genome. Gene catalogues generated in this way can be explored to reveal the patterns of expression associated with parasitism and candidates for testing as drug targets or vaccine components. Analysis environments, such as NEMBASE facilitate exploitation of these data. The development of new high-throughput DNA-sequencing technologies has facilitated transcriptomic and genomic approaches to parasite biology. Whole genome sequencing offers more complete catalogues of genes and assists a systems approach to phenotype dissection. These efforts are being coordinated through the 959 Nematode Genomes initiative.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)108-20
Number of pages13
JournalParasite Immunology
Volume34
Issue number2-3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2012

Keywords

  • expressed swquence tag
  • genome
  • nematode
  • next-generation sequencing
  • transcriptome

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