Abstract Detail

Comparative Genomics/Transcriptomics

McEvoy, Susan [1], Trouern-Trend, Alexander [1], Sezen, Uzay [2], Wegrzyn, Jill [1], Swenson, Nathan [3].

Genomic characterization and comparison of two maples highlights genes involved in the stress response to acidic soils.

In the last decade, forest trees have seen an increase in genomic and transcriptomic resources, driven by concern over compounding environmental challenges. Acer saccharum (sugar maple), a key ecological hardwood native to Northeastern forests, is one such species declining in the face of climate change. It requires high nutrient soils and is susceptible to increases in salinity, heavy metals, and drought. Acer negundo (box elder) provides a counterpoint, with its broad native range and greater tolerance to a variety of these abiotic stressors. Newly created reference genomes and annotations available for both species allow for comprehensive characterization and expanded investigations into their adaptive potential. The sequencing design consists of deep long read coverage Pacific Biosciences SEQUEL and Hi-C data (A. negundo, 100x; A. saccharum, 65x).  These diploid, highly heterozygous trees have moderate genomes, estimated at 590Mbp and 440Mbp, respectively.  Gene annotation combined existing and novel approaches to evaluate gene prediction methods, leveraging RNA-Seq data generated for both species. Genomic comparisons among the three existing Acer and other annotated land plants was used to identify putative expansions and contractions of gene families underlying the unique and shared biology of these species. A. saccharum gene annotations were also used with stem tissue RNA-seq in a differential expression analysis comparing aluminum and calcium treatment plots at the Hubbard Brook Experimental Forest to identify the genetic response to soil conditions, a key factor in sugar maple decline.

1 - University of Connecticut, Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, 75 N Eagleville Road, Unit 3043, Storrs, CT, 06269, United States
2 - Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, 647 Contees Wharf Rd, Edgewater, MD, 21037, United States
3 - University Of Maryland, 4207 Biology Psychology Building, College Park, MD, 21146, United States

Sugar Maple
box elder
Abiotic stress

Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Session: CG1, Functional & Comparative Genetics/Genomics I
Location: Virtual/Virtual
Date: Tuesday, July 28th, 2020
Time: 1:45 PM
Number: CG1006
Abstract ID:214
Candidate for Awards:Margaret Menzel Award

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