Secuenciación de alta calidad del genoma de Posidonia oceanica

[Cod. PosiGenome PosiGenome]

Posidonia oceanica plays a crucial role in carbon fixation and as a keystone species in Mediterranean
marine biodiversity, but genetic studies performed so far in this organism are very limited due to the absence
of a reference genome. This shortfall is even more notorious in view of imminent climate change and other
anthropic impacts. We aim to use the fully annotated ultra high-quality reference genome of Posidonia
oceanica recently obtained by the Joint Genome Institute (JGI) (
angiosperm-genome-initiative/) to assess the genetic diversity of different populations of P. oceanica across
the Mediterranean basin with spacial focus on the Balearic Islands. In order to meet this goal, we will map
short Illumina reads of 14 individuals to the reference genome to obtain thousands of SNPs across the whole
genome. This genetic information will shed light on past demographic changes in Posidonia due to
bottlenecks driven by the Messinian salinity crisis and last glaciation cycles and on the reaction of this
species in front of these strong selective pressures. These genomic results will reveal genetic diversity
across the geographic range but also those genomic regions harbouring more genetic variants and those
under positive selection and hence related to genomic adaptations. This project will lay the foundations for
advanced and comprehensive genetic and gene expression studies at the genomic level with a major impact
on conservation and management of this species.