The objective of the present study was to analyze the phenotypic stability of sex after sex differentiation in the Yesso scallop, which is a gonochoristic species that has been described as protandrous. So far, no study has investigated in detail the sexual fate of the scallop after completion of sex differentiation, although bivalve species often show annual sex change. In the present study, we performed a tracking experiment to analyze the phenotypic stability of sex in scallops between one and two years of age. We also conducted molecular marker analyses to describe sex differentiation and gonad development. The results of the tracking experiment revealed that all scallops maintained their initial sex phenotype, as identified in the last reproductive period. Using molecular analyses, we characterized my-dmrt2 and my-foxl2 as sex identification markers for the testis and ovary, respectively. We conclude by proposing that the Yesso scallop is a sex-stable bivalve after its initial sex differentiation and that it maintains a sex-stable maturation system throughout its life. The sex-specific molecular markers identified in this study are useful tools to assess the reproductive status of the Yesso scallop.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Animal Science and Zoology