Positive selection over the mitochondrial genome and its role in the diversification of gentoo penguins in response to adaptation in isolation

Nature Scientific Reports volume 12, Article number: 3767 (2022)

Our study suggests that local adaptation of gentoo penguins has emerged as a response to environmental variability promoting the fixation of mitochondrial haplotypes in a non-random manner. Mitogenome adaptation is thus likely to have been associated with gentoo penguin diversification across the Southern Ocean and to have promoted their survival in extreme environments such as Antarctica. Such selective processes on the mitochondrial genome may also be responsible for the discordance detected between nuclear- and mitochondrial-based phylogenies of gentoo penguin lineages.

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More than the eye can see: Genomic insights into the drivers of genetic differentiation in Royal/Macaroni penguins across the Southern Ocean

Molecular Phylogenetics and Evolution, 139 (2019) 106563(2020)

In this study, we use genome-wide Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms to test genetic differentiation between these geographically isolated taxa and evaluate the main drivers of population structure among breeding colonies of macaroni/royal penguins. Genetic similarity observed between macaroni and royal penguins suggests they constitute a single evolutionary unit.

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Genome-wide analyses reveal drivers of penguin diversification

PNAS, August 17, 2020, 117 (36) 22303-22310

Penguins are the only extant family of flightless diving birds. They currently comprise at least 18 species, distributed from polar to tropical environments in the Southern Hemisphere. The history of their diversification and adaptation to these diverse environments remains controversial. We used 22 new genomes from 18 penguin species to reconstruct the order, timing, and location of their diversification, to track changes in their thermal niches through time, and to test for associated adaptation across the genome.

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Maternal opioid use disorder: Placental transcriptome analysis for neonatal opioid withdrawal syndrome

Genomics, Volume 113, Issue 6, 2021, Pages 3610-3617, ISSN 0888-7543

Excessive prenatal opioid exposure may lead to the development of Neonatal Opioid Withdrawal Syndrome (NOWS). RNA-seq was done on 64 formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded placental tissue samples from 32 mothers with opioid use disorder, with newborns with NOWS that required treatment, and 32 prenatally unexposed controls. We identified 93 differentially expressed genes in the placentas of infants with NOWS compared to unexposed controls.

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