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BRIDGE-MAP
Bridging genomes: An integrated genomic approach toward genetic improvement of aquacultured fish species

The present project will use a combined approach of radiation hybrid, linkage and QTL
mapping as well as creation of resources for genome research (BAC library, cDNA
libraries, ESTs and database) to:
1. transfer genome information from model organisms to commercial species through the approach of comparative genomics;
2. bridge the gaps in maps by merging radiation hybrid maps and linkage maps;
3. bridge the distance between research and industry by accelerating the identification of DNA to phenotype relationships by a pilot application to a commercial selective breeding programme;
4. integrate evolutionary theory and modern technology to generate an applied endpoint;
5. integrate genome maps of various teleosts with data from higher vertebrates, thanks to the high potential of comparative mapping;
6. transfer technology and know-how from leading laboratories in genome analysis and
mapping to more classical fish genetics laboratories.

Objectives
The project work plan is centred around the application of modern biotechnological
methods to aquaculture. It is subdivided into eight main work packages, each of which is
coordinated by the partner with the relevant expertise, and the completion of which will
contribute to the attainment of the project objectives.
The work packages articulate with each other and can be subdivided into three main
groups according to the nature of the methods used:
1. Molecular biotechnology, which includes methodologies for generating mapping panels
for the linkage map (WP1) and radiation hybrid mapping (RH) (WP2), a highly
automatable new method for physical mapping, genotyping the linkage map (WP3) and
RH map (WP5), by use of high-throughput automated methods, and isolating STS
markers for RH mapping (WP4).
2. Conventional genetic: the tools generated in WPs 1 to 5 will be used to screen sea bream (Sparus aurata) generated in a breeding programme on an SME fish farm. This will result in the transfer of molecular biotechnological methodologies to conventional
genetics and the implementation of technology transfer from science to industry;
3. The final work package which will run simultaneously with the other project tasks, is
the analysis of the extensive data which will be generated by the various work packages
of the project. Bioinformatics will be essential for the handling and interpretation of the
data and for their successful dissemination in order that the project can have a maximum impact in the fields of aquaculture research, fish genetics, and comparative mapping.

Results
Biotechnological and scientific expertise will be transferred from model organisms to
commercial aquaculture species, for example the sea bream. An integrated map, merging physical and linkage maps, will be generated and applied to a selective breeding programme.
This will be achieved by production of a radiation hybrid panel. Sea bream
cDNA and BAC genomic libraries will be produced and coding genes with potentially
commercial importance will be identified and mapped. A sea bream-zebra fish comparative map integrated with 'gene rich' vertebrate maps will shed light on the gene to phenotype relationship. This will be based on mapping of about 2 000 genes and markers thanks to the creation of the radiation hybrid panel. Such a combined map of genes and polymorphic markers will directly link QTLs to chromosomal regions of known gene content through the comparative mapping approach. The project is expected to establish a reference genome information for marine percifomes species.

Classified in FISHERIES AND AQUACULTURE, GENOMICS

Scientist responsible for the project

Dr GIORGOS Kotoulas
Port of Iraklion Box 2214
GR 710 03 Iraklion
Greece - GR

Phone: 3081242022
Fax: 3081241882
E-mail: kotoulas@ns0.imbc.gr

References

Project ID QLRT-2000-01797
Organisation Institute of Marine Biology of Crete
Area 5.1.2
Start date 01 November 2002
Duration (months) 48
Total cost 2 227 000 €
Total EC contribution   1 635 000 €
Status Ongoing
Web address of the project   http://www.bridgemap.tuc.gr

The partners

  • UNIVERSIDADE DO ALGARVE, Austria - AT
  • MAX-PLANCK-INSTITUT FUER ENTWICKLUNGSBIOLOGIE, Austria - AT
  • THE NATIONAL CENTER FOR MARICULTURE, ISRAEL OCEANOGRAPHIC & LIMNOLOGICAL RESEARCH LTD, Israel - IL
    dishon@ocean.org.il
  • CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE DELEGATION REGIONALE BRETAGNE ET PAYS DE LA LOIRE, Austria - AT
    Rene.Quris@dr17.cnrs.fr
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