Comparative Transcriptome Analysis of Spleen Reveals Potential Regulation of Genes and Immune Pathways Following Administration of Aeromonas salmonicida subsp. masoucida Vaccine in Atlantic Salmon (Salmo salar)

Mar Biotechnol (NY). 2022 Mar;24(1):97-115. doi: 10.1007/s10126-021-10089-6. Epub 2022 Jan 27.


Aeromonas salmonicida is a global fish pathogen. Aeromonas salmonicida subsp. masoucida (ASM) is classified as atypical A. salmonicida and caused huge losses to salmonid industry in China. Hence, it is of great significance to develop ASM vaccine and explore its protection mechanism in salmonids. In this regard, we conducted RNA-seq analysis with spleen tissue of Atlantic salmon after ASM vaccination to reveal genes, their expression patterns, and pathways involved in immune protections. In our results, a total of 441.63 million clean reads were obtained, and 389.37 million reads were mapped onto the Atlantic salmon reference genome. In addition, 1125, 2126, 1098, 820, and 1351 genes were significantly up-regulated, and 747, 2626, 818, 254, and 908 genes were significantly down-regulated post-ASM vaccination at 12 h, 24 h, 1 month, 2 months, and 3 months, respectively. Subsequent pathway analysis revealed that many differentially expressed genes (DEGs) following ASM vaccination were involved in cytokine-cytokine receptor interaction (TNFRSF11b, IL-17RA, CCR9, and CXCL11), HTLV-I infection (MR1 and HTLV-1), MAPK signaling pathway (MAPK, IL8, and TNF-α-1), PI3K-Akt signaling pathway (PIK3R3, THBS4, and COL2A1), and TNF signaling pathway (PTGS2, TNFRSF21-l, and CXCL10). Finally, the results of qRT-PCR showed a significant correlation with RNA-seq results, suggesting the reliability of RNA-seq for gene expression analysis. This study provided insights into regulation of gene expression and their involved pathways in Atlantic salmon spleen in responses to vaccine, and set the foundation for further study on the vaccine protective mechanism in Atlantic salmon as well as other teleost species.

Keywords: Aeromonas salmonicida; Atlantic salmon; RNA-seq; Spleen; Vaccination.

MeSH terms

  • Aeromonas
  • Aeromonas salmonicida* / genetics
  • Animals
  • Fish Diseases* / genetics
  • Gene Expression Profiling
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases / genetics
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Salmo salar* / genetics
  • Spleen
  • Vaccines*


  • Vaccines

Supplementary concepts

  • Aeromonas salmonicida subsp. masoucida