Submitted to: Molecular Ecology Resources
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/12/2014
Publication Date: 8/11/2014
Citation: Lia, C., Gowan, S., Anil, A., Beck, B.H., Thongda, W., Kucuktas, H., Kaltenboeck, L., Peatman, E. 2014. Discovery and validation of gene-linked diagnostic SNP markers for assessing hybridization between largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) and Florida bass (M. floridanus). Molecular Ecology Resources. 15:395-404. Interpretive Summary: Largemouth bass are among the most popular freshwater sport fish in North America, and are emerging as an important farmed food fish species. Stocking efforts have been intense for the largemouth bass, now believed to be represented by two distinct species, the Florida bass (Micropterus floridanus) and the (Northern) largemouth bass (M. salmoides). Despite the growing interest in the management, conservation, and farming potential of these bass species, little was known about their genetic makeup. In the present study we sequenced thousands of genes in Florida bass, Northern bass, and their hybrid and also identified a set of nearly 4,000 genetic markers that can reliably distinguish between each species. This new resource will enhance functional genomics studies and promote the discovery of genes linked to important traits such as disease resistance and growth.
Technical Abstract: Hybridization of Florida bass (Micropterus floridanus) with largemouth bass (Micropterus salmoides) has dramatically expanded beyond a naturally-occurring intergrade zone in the Southeast U.S. Efforts to improve recreational fisheries have included widespread stocking of M. floridanus outside its native range of peninsular Florida. In recent years there has been growing interest in protecting the genetic integrity of native basses and assessing the impact and nature of M. salmoides/M. floridanus introgression from the standpoint of hatchery managers, fish biologists, ecologists, evolutionary biologists, and sport-fishery managers. Here we sequenced the transcriptomes of M. salmoides, M. floridanus and their F1 hybrid and identified a set of 3,674 SNP markers with fixed allelic differences from 2,112 unique genes. We then developed a subset of 25 of these markers into a diagnostic single multiplex assay and validated its capacity for assessing integrity and hybridization in hatchery and wild populations of bass. The availability of this resource, high quality transcriptomes and a large set of gene-linked SNPs, should greatly facilitate functional and population genomics studies in these key species and allow the identification of traits and processes under selection during introgressive hybridization.