Northwest Fisheries Science Center

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Document Type: Journal Article
Center: NWFSC
Document ID: 4613
Title: High-throughput sequencing and pathway analysis reveal alteration of the pituitary transcriptome by 17-alpha ethynylestradiol (EE2) in female coho salmon, Oncorhychus kisutch
Author: Louisa B. Harding, Irvin R. Schulz, Giles W. Goetz, J. Adam Luckenbach, Graham Young, Frederick W. Goetz, Penny Swanson
Publication Year: 2013
Journal: Aquatic Toxicology
Keywords: endocrine disruption, xenoestrogen, transcriptomics, high-throughput sequencing,endocrine disruptors,salmon,reproductive dysfunction

 Considerable research has been done on the effects of endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) on reproduction and gene expression in the brain, liver and gonads of teleost fish, but information on impacts to the pituitary gland are still limited despite its central role in regulating reproduction. The aim of this study was to further our understanding of the potential effects of natural and synthetic estrogens on the brain-pituitary-gonad axis in fish by determining the effects of 17alpha-ethynylestradiol (EE2) on the pituitary transcriptome.  Juvenile coho salmon were exposed to 12 ng EE2/L for up to 6 weeks and effects on the pituitary transcriptome of females were assessed using high-throughput Illumina® sequencing, RNA-Seq and pathway analysis. Expression of hundreds of genes were altered by the EE2 exposure.  These included genes involved in regulating reproduction, cell cycle, cell differentiation, and circadian rhythms.  The results suggest that exposure of coho salmon to low levels of environmental estrogens could alter many processes important for reproduction as well as the seasonal timing of reproduction.

Theme: Recovery, Rebuilding and Sustainability of Marine and Anadromous Species
Foci: Describe the relationship among human activities and species stock status, recovery, rebuilding and sustainability.