About this Research Topic
Next-generation sequencing technologies, accompanied by metabolomics and proteomics (generally referred to as omics) present a major step forward in technology toward a better understanding of the genetic basis and mechanistic manifestation of endocrine physiology and pathology. Even with omics, a significant gap in our current knowledge exists in terms of addressing endocrinology in non-model organisms, where the relatively small number of research groups studying these organisms hinders the accumulation of new knowledge.
Omics approaches enable the rapid identification and characterization of the components of endocrine pathways. The continued decrease in cost and increase in availability make omics a widely used tool to bridge this gap. In many cases, key endocrine components assume varying roles throughout evolution. The functional analysis and interpretation of omics data is still in its infancy, and a better approach to integrating omics with high throughput functional analysis will lead to a better understanding of the evolution of these endocrine components in different taxonomic groups. In turn, a better understanding of the endocrinology of non-model organisms will enable the improved implementation of bioremediation and pest management plans, aquaculture and agriculture practices, as well as the mitigation of diseases.
At the scientific level, a better understanding of the repertoire of endocrine components and their receptors will inform their potential roles. For example, most G-protein coupled receptors are orphans in non-model organisms, and therefore a high throughput approach to deorphanize them will be a key component in devising applications in many fields of research. In summary, omics has paved the pathways to new discovery for a multitude of endocrine components in a wide array of non-model organisms. An integrated approach that takes into account the evolution of the non-model organisms and studies the function, will ultimately close the gap at a rapid pace, once implemented.
This Research Topic collection is aimed to incorporate novel uses of omics in endocrine study of non-model organisms, including newly established methodologies that can benefit the broader research community, applications derived from knowledge gained by omics approaches, or retrospective consideration of omics for applications that emerged earlier than the omics era and could thus be more rapidly facilitated and disseminated using omics. Approaches to bridge the gap between the relative ease and high pace at which one can generate massive omics outputs and the painstakingly slow process of functional bioassays will be considered as highly favorable, as it will inform researchers on how to enable that.
Keywords: Non-model species, Next-generation sequencing, omics
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