Meeting Abstract

11.5  Friday, Jan. 4  Tissue specific gene expression in the fresh water snail Biomphalaria glabrata: implications for biominerlization and shell formation HANNA, B.SK*; CHANG, PK; MEDINA, MM; University of California, Merced; University of California, Merced; University of California, Merced

The lack of good manipulatable models to study biomineralization in molluscs led us to investigate the potential use of the fresh water snail Biomphalaria glabrata. Using comparative bioinformatics on several molluscan mantle transcriptomes from previous studies, we were able to detect conserved transcripts responsible for biomineralization. We conducted RT-PCR based experiments for a subset of the genes (n=70) in order to explore specific expression patterns in four different B. glabrata tissues: Mantle edge, foot, hepatopancreas and ovotestis. Six out of the 70 novel transcripts showed exclusive expression in the mantle edge. While 19 genes showed significant over expression in the mantle edge over the other tissues. Using a combination of in-situ hybridization and RNAi we are currently trying to understand the functional role of these novel biomineralization-related genes.