Transcriptome Analysis of Honeybee (Apis Mellifera) Haploid and Diploid Embryos Reveals Early Zygotic Transcription during Cleavage

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Pires, Camilla Valente
Freitas, Flávia Cristina de Paula
Cristino, Alexandre S
Dearden, Peter K
Simões, Zilá Luz Paulino
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2016
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Abstract

In honeybees, the haplodiploid sex determination system promotes a unique embryogenesis process wherein females develop from fertilized eggs and males develop from unfertilized eggs. However, the developmental strategies of honeybees during early embryogenesis are virtually unknown. Similar to most animals, the honeybee oocytes are supplied with proteins and regulatory elements that support early embryogenesis. As the embryo develops, the zygotic genome is activated and zygotic products gradually replace the preloaded maternal material. The analysis of small RNA and mRNA libraries of mature oocytes and embryos originated from fertilized and unfertilized eggs has allowed us to explore the gene expression dynamics in the first steps of development and during the maternal-to-zygotic transition (MZT). We localized a short sequence motif identified as TAGteam motif and hypothesized to play a similar role in honeybees as in fruit flies, which includes the timing of early zygotic expression (MZT), a function sustained by the presence of the zelda ortholog, which is the main regulator of genome activation. Predicted microRNA (miRNA)-target interactions indicated that there were specific regulators of haploid and diploid embryonic development and an overlap of maternal and zygotic gene expression during the early steps of embryogenesis. Although a number of functions are highly conserved during the early steps of honeybee embryogenesis, the results showed that zygotic genome activation occurs earlier in honeybees than in Drosophila based on the presence of three primary miRNAs (pri-miRNAs) (ame-mir-375, ame-mir-34 and ame-mir-263b) during the cleavage stage in haploid and diploid embryonic development.

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PLoS ONE

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11

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1

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© 2016 Pires et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

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Microbiology

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Pires, CV; Freitas, FCDP; Cristino, AS; Dearden, PK; Simões, ZLP, Transcriptome Analysis of Honeybee (Apis Mellifera) Haploid and Diploid Embryos Reveals Early Zygotic Transcription during Cleavage, PLoS ONE, 11 (1), pp. e0146447:1-e0146447:22

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