Pyrosequencing-based transcriptomic resources in the pond snail Lymnaea stagnalis, with a focus on genes involved in molecular response to diquat-induced stress

Ecotoxicology. 2012 Nov;21(8):2222-34. doi: 10.1007/s10646-012-0977-1. Epub 2012 Jul 20.


Due to their ability to explore whole genome response to drugs and stressors, omics-based approaches are widely used in toxicology and ecotoxicology, and identified as powerful tools for future ecological risk assessment and environmental monitoring programs. Understanding the long-term effects of contaminants may indeed benefit from the coupling of genomics and eco-evolutionary hypotheses. Next-generation sequencing provides a new way to investigate pollutants impact, by targeting early responses, screening chemicals, and directly quantifying gene expression, even in organisms without reference genome. Lymnaea stagnalis is a freshwater mollusk in which access to genomic resources is critical for many scientific issues, especially in ecotoxicology. We used 454-pyrosequencing to obtain new transcriptomic resources in L. stagnalis and to preliminarily explore gene expression response to a redox-cycling pesticide, diquat. We obtained 151,967 and 128,945 high-quality reads from control and diquat-exposed individuals, respectively. Sequence assembly provided 141,999 contigs, of which 124,387 were singletons. BlastX search revealed significant match for 34.6 % of the contigs (21.2 % protein hits). KEGG annotation showed a predominance of hits with genes involved in energy metabolism and circulatory system, and revealed more than 400 putative genes involved in oxidative stress, cellular/molecular stress and signaling pathways, apoptosis, and metabolism of xenobiotics. Results also suggest that diquat may have a great diversity of molecular effects. Moreover, new genetic markers (putative SNPs) were discovered. We also created a Ensembl-like web-tool for data-mining ( ). This resource is expected to be relevant for any genomic approach aimed at understanding the molecular basis of physiological and evolutionary responses to environmental stress in L. stagnalis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Databases, Genetic
  • Diquat / pharmacology*
  • Expressed Sequence Tags
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Herbicides / pharmacology*
  • Lymnaea / drug effects*
  • Lymnaea / genetics*
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • Transcriptome*


  • Herbicides
  • Diquat