Kuo RC, Zhang H, Zhuang Y, Hannick L, Lin S
Transcriptomic Study Reveals Widespread Spliced Leader Trans-Splicing, Short 5'-UTRs and Potential Complex Carbon Fixation Mechanisms In the Euglenoid Alga Eutreptiella Sp.
PloS One. 2013 Apr 01; 8: e60826.
Eutreptiella are an evolutionarily unique and ecologically important genus of microalgae, but they are poorly understood with regard to their genomic make-up and expression profiles. Through the analysis of the full-length cDNAs from a Eutreptiella species, we found a conserved 28-nt spliced leader sequence (Eut-SL, ACACUUUCUGAGUGUCUAUUUUUUUUCG) was trans-spliced to the mRNAs of Eutreptiella sp. Using a primer derived from Eut-SL, we constructed four cDNA libraries under contrasting physiological conditions for 454 pyrosequencing. Clustering analysis of the ∼1.9×10(6) original reads (average length 382 bp) yielded 36,643 unique transcripts. Although only 28% of the transcripts matched documented genes, this fraction represents a functionally very diverse gene set, suggesting that SL trans-splicing is likely ubiquitous in this alga's transcriptome. The mRNAs of Eutreptiella sp. seemed to have short 5'- untranslated regions, estimated to be 21 nucleotides on average. Among the diverse biochemical pathways represented in the transcriptome we obtained, carbonic anhydrase and genes known to function in the C4 pathway and heterotrophic carbon fixation were found, posing a question whether Eutreptiella sp. employs multifaceted strategies to acquire and fix carbon efficiently. This first large-scale transcriptomic dataset for a euglenoid uncovers many potential novel genes and overall offers a valuable genetic resource for research on euglenoid algae.