Transcriptome-wide mapping of signaling pathways and early immune responses in lumpfish leukocytes upon in vitro bacterial exposure

Sci Rep. 2018 Mar 27;8(1):5261. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-23667-x.


We performed RNA sequencing, identified components of the immune system and mapped early immune responses of lumpfish (Cyclopterus lumpus) leukocytes following in vitro exposure to the pathogenic bacterium Vibrio anguillarum O1. This is the first characterization of immune molecules in lumpfish at the gene level. In silico analyses revealed that genes encoding proteins involved in pathogen recognition, cell signaling and cytokines in mammals and teleosts are conserved in lumpfish. Unique molecules were also identified. Pathogen recognition components include 13 TLRs, several NLRs and complement factors. Transcriptome-wide analyses of immune responses 6 and 24 hours post bacterial exposure revealed differential expression of 9033 and 15225 genes, respectively. These included TLR5S, IL-1β, IL-8, IL-6, TNFα, IL-17A/F3, IL-17C and several components of the complement system. The data generated will be valuable for comparative studies and make an important basis for further functional analyses of immune and pathogenicity mechanisms. Such knowledge is also important for design of immunoprophylactic measures in lumpfish, a species of fish now farmed intensively for use as cleaner-fish in Atlantic salmon (Salmo salar) aquaculture.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Aquaculture
  • Bacteria / immunology
  • Bacterial Infections / genetics
  • Bacterial Infections / immunology
  • Bacterial Infections / microbiology
  • Bacterial Infections / veterinary*
  • Base Sequence
  • Complement Activation
  • Fish Diseases / genetics*
  • Fish Diseases / immunology
  • Fish Diseases / microbiology
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Immunity, Innate
  • Leukocytes / immunology
  • Leukocytes / metabolism
  • Leukocytes / microbiology
  • Perciformes / genetics*
  • Perciformes / immunology
  • Perciformes / microbiology
  • Transcriptome*