Dermo disease, caused by Perkinsus marinus, is one of the most severe diseases of eastern oysters, Crassostrea virginica. It causes serious mortalities in both wild and aquacultured oysters. Using existing expressed sequence tag (EST) resources, we developed a 12K in situ oligonucleotide microarray and used it for the analysis of gene expression profiles of oysters during the interactions between P. marinus and its oyster host. Significant gene expression regulation was found at day 30 post-challenge in the eastern oyster. Putative identities of the differentially expressed genes revealed a set of genes involved in several processes including putative antimicrobial defenses, pathogen recognition and uptake, anti-oxidation and apoptosis. Consistent with results obtained from previous, smaller-scale experiments, expression profiles revealed a large set of genes likely involved in an active mitigating response to oxidative stress and apoptosis induced by P. marinus. Additionally, a unique galectin from C. virginica, CvGal, which serves as a preferential receptor for P. marinus trophozoites, was found to be significantly down-regulated in gill tissue of oysters with both light and heavy infection, suggesting an attempt to control parasite uptake and proliferation in the later stages of infection. Potential histone-derived antimicrobial responses to P. marinus were also revealed in the gene expression profiles.
- Oxidative stress
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Environmental Chemistry
- Aquatic Science
- Immunology and Microbiology (miscellaneous)