E-GEOD-10630 - Mfaveolata single-time point bleaching experiment
Submitted on 25 February 2008, released on 31 May 2008, last updated on 2 May 2014
The declining health of coral reefs worldwide is likely to intensify in response to continued anthropogenic disturbance from coastal development, pollution, and climate change. In response to these stresses, reef-building corals may exhibit bleaching, which marks the breakdown in symbiosis between coral and zooxanthellae. Mass coral bleaching due to elevated water temperature can devastate coral reefs on a large geographic scale. In order to understand the molecular and cellular basis of bleaching in corals, we have measured gene expression changes associated with thermal stress and bleaching using a cDNA microarray containing 1,310 genes of the Caribbean coral Montastraea faveolata. In a first experiment, we identified differentially expressed genes by comparing experimentally bleached M. faveolata fragments to control non-heat-stressed fragments. We also identified differentially expressed genes during a time course experiment with four time points across nine days. Results suggest that thermal stress and bleaching in M. faveolata affect the following processes: oxidative stress, Ca2+ homeostasis, cytoskeletal organization, cell death, calcification, metabolism, protein synthesis, heat shock protein activity, and transposon activity. These results represent the first large-scale transcriptomic study focused on revealing the cellular foundation of thermal stress-induced coral bleaching. We postulate that oxidative stress in thermal-stressed corals causes a disruption of Ca2+ homeostasis, which in turn leads to cytoskeletal and cell adhesion changes, decreased calcification, and the initiation of cell death via apoptosis and necrosis. Keywords: thermal stress response; coral bleaching 5 control and 5 heat-stressed RNA samples were hybridized in a 5-replicate dye-swap design (10 total hyb's).
unknown experiment type
Differential gene expression during thermal stress and bleaching in the Caribbean coral Montastraea faveolata. DeSalvo MK, Voolstra CR, Sunagawa S, Schwarz JA, Stillman JH, Coffroth MA, Szmant AM, Medina M.