Generation of a Biobank From Two Adult Thoroughbred Stallions for the Functional Annotation of Animal Genomes Initiative.
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Following the successful creation of a biobank from two adult Thoroughbred mares, this study aimed to recapitulate sample collection in two adult Thoroughbred stallions as part of the Functional Annotation of the Animal Genome (FAANG) initiative. Both stallions underwent thorough physical, lameness, neurologic, and ophthalmic (including electroretinography) examinations prior to humane euthanasia. Epididymal sperm was recovered from both stallions immediately postmortem and cryopreserved. Aseptically collected full thickness skin biopsies were used to isolate, culture and cryopreserve dermal fibroblasts. Serum, plasma, cerebrospinal fluid, urine, and gastrointestinal content from various locations were collected and cryopreserved. Under guidance of a board-certified veterinary anatomic pathologist, 102 representative tissue samples were collected from both horses. Whole tissue samples were flash-frozen and prioritized tissues had nuclei isolated and cryopreserved. Spatially contemporaneous samples of each tissue were submitted for histologic examination. Antemortem and gross pathologic examination revealed mild abnormalities in both stallions. One stallion (ECA_UCD_AH3) had unilateral thoracic limb lameness and bilateral chorioretinal scars. The second stallion (ECA_UCD_AH4) had subtle symmetrical pelvic limb ataxia, symmetrical prostatomegally, and moderate gastrointestinal nematodiasis. DNA from each was whole-genome sequenced and genotyped using the GGP Equine 70K SNP array. The genomic resources and banked biological samples from these animals augments the existing resource available to the equine genomics community. Importantly we may now improve the resolution of tissue-specific gene regulation as affected by sex, as well as add sex-specific tissues and gametes.