Annual transcriptome of a key zooplankton species, the copepod Calanus finmarchicus

The copepod Calanus finmarchicus (Crustacea, Copepoda) is a key zooplanktonic species with a crucial position in the North Atlantic food web and significant contributor to ocean carbon flux. Like many other high latitude animals, it has evolved a programmed arrested development called diapause to cope with long periods of limited food supply, while growth and reproduction are timed to take advantage of seasonal peaks in primary production. However, anthropogenic warming is inducing changes in the expected timing of phytoplankton blooms, suggesting phenological mismatches with negative consequences for the N. Atlantic ecosystem. While diapause mechanisms are mainly studied in terrestrial arthropods, specifically on laboratory model species, such as the fruit fly Drosophila, the molecular investigations of annual rhythms in wild marine species remain fragmentary. Here we performed a rigorous year-long monthly sampling campaign of C. finmarchicus in a Scottish Loch (UK; 56.45°N, 5.18°W) to generate an annual transcriptome. The mRNA of 36 samples (monthly triplicate of 25 individuals) have been deeply sequenced with an average depth of 137 ± 4 million reads (mean ± SE) per sample, aligned to the reference transcriptome, and filtered. We detail the quality assessment of the datasets and provide a high-quality resource for the investigation of wild annual transcriptomic rhythms (35,357 components) in a key diapausing zooplanktonic species.


Payton L, Noirot C, Last KS, Grigor J, Hüppe L, Conway DVP, Dannemeyer M, Suin A, Meyer B

Ecology and Evolution 12 (2)
02, 22, 2022
Pages: e8605
DOI: 10.1002/ece3.8605