A Gene-Based Method for Cytogenetic Mapping of Repeat-Rich Mosquito Genomes
Masri, Reem A.
Karagodin, Dmitriy A.
Sharakhova, Maria V.
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Long-read sequencing technologies have opened up new avenues of research on the mosquito genome biology, enabling scientists to better understand the remarkable abilities of vectors for transmitting pathogens. Although new genome mapping technologies such as Hi-C scaffolding and optical mapping may significantly improve the quality of genomes, only cytogenetic mapping, with the help of fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), connects genomic scaffolds to a particular chromosome and chromosome band. This mapping approach is important for creating and validating chromosome-scale genome assemblies for mosquitoes with repeat-rich genomes, which can potentially be misassembled. In this study, we describe a new gene-based physical mapping approach that was optimized using the newly assembled Aedes albopictus genome, which is enriched with transposable elements. To avoid amplification of the repetitive DNA, 15 protein-coding gene transcripts were used for the probe design. Instead of using genomic DNA, complementary DNA was utilized as a template for development of the PCR-amplified probes for FISH. All probes were successfully amplified and mapped to specific chromosome bands. The genome-unique probes allowed to perform unambiguous mapping of genomic scaffolds to chromosome regions. The method described in detail here can be used for physical genome mapping in other insects.