MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are ~20-22 nucleotides, non protein-coding RNA regulatory genes that post-transcriptionally regulate many protein-coding genes, influencing critical biological and metabolic processes. While the number of known microRNA is increasing, there is currently no published data for miRNA from giant freshwater prawns, Macrobrachium rosenbergii ( M. rosenbergii), a commercially cultured and economically important food species. In this study, we identified novel miRNAs in the gill and hepatopancreas of M. rosenbergii. Through a deep parallel sequencing analysis and an in silico data analysis approach, 327 miRNA families were identified from small RNA libraries with reference to both the de novo transcriptome of M. rosenbergii obtained from RNA-Seq and to miRBase (Release 18.0, November 2012). Based on the identified mature miRNA and recovered precursor sequences that form appropriate hairpin structures, three conserved miRNA (miR125, miR750, miR993) and 27 novel miRNA candidates encoding messenger-like non-coding RNA were identified. miR-125, miR-750, G-m0002/H-m0009, G-m0005, G-m0008/H-m0016, G-m0011/H-m0027 and G-m0015 were selected for experimental validation with stem-loop quantitative RT-PCR and were found to be coherent with the expression profile of deep sequencing data as evaluated with Pearson's correlation coefficient ( r=0.835178 for miRNA in gill, r=0.724131 for miRNA in hepatopancreas). Using a combinatorial approach of pathway enrichment analysis and inverse expression relationship of miRNA and mRNA, fourco-expressed novel miRNA candidates (G-m0005, G-m0008/H-m0016, G-m0011/H-m0027, and G-m0015) were found to be associated with energy metabolism. In addition, the expression of the three novel miRNA candidates (G-m0005, G-m0008/H-m0016, and G-m0011/H-m0027) were also found to be significantly reduced at 9 and 24hpost infection in M. rosenbergii challenged with infectious hypodermal and hematopoietic necrosis virus, suggesting a functional role of these miRNAs in crustacean immune defense.
- Immune response
- Macrobrachium rosenbergii