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T2 AM 'Omic' Technologies: Current and Future Application to Environmental Toxicology (Part 1)
(HEL-1117-832050) Making ′omics′ tools work for sentinel species — a lesson from frogs.
Helbing, Caren1, 1 University of Victoria, Victoria, BC, Canada
ABSTRACT- Despite the number of genome sequences available, only a minute fraction of the diversity of life on our planet is represented. Sentinel species for which substantial toxicological data exist are largely underrepresented in the genomics arena. Yet ′omics′ tools still have promise for use in these less genetically-characterized species. There are over 5,000 species of frogs and toads worldwide that represent a variety of life strategies, ecological niches and susceptibilities to environmental contaminants and several of these species have been used in toxicology. However, only one frog genome sequence (Xenopus tropicalis) is known and the bulk of genetic information available through expressed sequence tags (ESTs) is from Xenopus laevis. Both of these species are useful as laboratory models, but fall short as useful sentinel species outside of the laboratory due to their limited natural range. Can their genetic information be directly applied to other frog species? Yes and no. Careful design of genomics tools can by-pass the pitfalls and generate valuable information that can be applied to the production of species-specific quantitative real time polymerase chain reaction (QPCR) gene expression biomarkers for indigenous frog species. Using examples from my laboratory, I will address the challenges and successes of applying ′omics′ tools to the study of thyroid hormones and disruptors of hormone action in North American frog species.
Key words: amphibian, endocrine disruptor, genomics, thyroid hormone
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