Líffræðifélag Íslands - biologia.is
Líffræðiráðstefnan 2019

Erindi/veggspjald / Talk/poster E31

DNA methylation in Arctic charr: Epigenetics to help understand polymorphism

Höfundar / Authors: Sébastien Matlosz (1), Benjamín Sigurgeirsson (1), Arnar Pálsson (1), Sigríður Rut Franzdóttir (1) , Sigurður Sveinn Snorrason (1), Zophonías O. Jónsson (1)

Starfsvettvangur / Affiliations: 1. University of Iceland

Kynnir / Presenter: Sebastien Matlosz

Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) is a polymorphic cold-water fish species belonging to the Salmonidæ family. In Iceland, Salvelinus alpinus is found in many places, but in Lake Thingvallavatn it displays remarkable morphological variation, in particular in terms of head and trophic apparatus development. The research team led by Professor Sigurður S. Snorrason has been working on understanding the reasons behind these morphological differences for years now, and some molecular pathways and gene expression differences have been highlighted recently. To add a new dimension to this research, this PhD project investigates Arctic charr’s epigenetic mechanisms. Its first part was to highlight DNA methylation differences during early development between the four distinct morphs. To do so, Reduced Representation Bisulfite Sequencing (RRBS) was used, allowing for identification of new candidate genes that might be responsible for those four different phenotypes.
In parallel, other methods to estimate global methylation levels are currently being used to assess the state of epigenetic reprogramming in this species. All those results will help shed some light on the role of DNA methylation in evolution as well as in craniofacial and fish development in general.