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De Novo Assembly of the Nearly Complete Fathead Minnow Reference Genome Reveals a Repetitive but Compact Genome.

Environmental Toxicology 2021
Martinson JW, et al.

John W. Martinson, David C. Bencic, Gregory P. Toth, Mitchell S. Kostich, Robert W. Flick, Mary J. See ,David Lattier, Adam D. Biales, Weichun Huang

The fathead minnow is a widely used model organism in environmental toxicology. The lack of a high-quality fathead minnow reference genome, however, has severely hampered its uses in toxicogenomics. We present the de novo assembly and annotation of the fathead minnow genome using long PacBio reads, Bionano and Hi-C scaffolding data, and large RNA-sequencing data sets from different tissues and life stages. The new annotated fathead minnow reference genome has a scaffold N50 of 12.0 Mbp and a complete benchmarking universal single-copy orthologs score of 95.1%. The completeness of annotation for the new reference genome is comparable to that of the zebrafish GRCz11 reference genome. The fathead minnow genome, revealed to be highly repetitive and sharing extensive syntenic regions with the zebrafish genome, has a much more compact gene structure than the zebrafish genome. Particularly, comparative genomic analysis with zebrafish, mouse, and human showed that fathead minnow homologous genes are relatively conserved in exon regions but had strikingly shorter intron regions. The new fathead minnow reference genome and annotation data, publicly available from the National Center for Biotechnology Information and the University of California Santa Cruz genome browser, provides an essential resource for aquatic toxicogenomic studies in ecotoxicology and public health. Environ Toxicol Chem 2022;00:1–14. Published 2021. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

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