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To return to the Midwest Fish & Wildlife Conference website, go to http://www.midwestfw.org/ The following schedule and room names are subject to change (as of February 1, 2017). Please check back for updates. 

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Presenters for technical presentations are either the primary author (the first name listed in the abstract), or are indicated with an asterisk next to their name. 

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Wednesday, February 8 • 10:20am - 10:40am
Technical Session. Post-mortem RNA Degradation in White-tailed Deer (Odocoileus virginianus) in Westcentral Illinois

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AUTHORS: Emma K. Trone*, Christopher N. Jacques, Paige Zick - Western Illinois University; Guoqing Lu, University of Nebraska-Omaha; Paul A. Shelton, Illinois Department of Natural Resources

ABSTRACT: White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) are an important wildlife species in Illinois and provide many social, economic, cultural, and ecological values to wildlife users throughout the state. Managing this species remains a top concern to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources. Potentially valuable molecular techniques (e.g., microarray analyses, next-generation sequencing) for understanding neurodegenerative diseases require use of ribonucleic acid (RNA) from post-mortem tissues. Despite ongoing research evaluating neurodegenerative diseases (e.g., chronic wasting disease) at a molecular level, there exists a paucity of information on potential effects of intrinsic (sex, tissue type, body temperature [Tb]) and extrinsic (ambient temperature [Ta]) factors on RNA quality. Thus, our objective was to evaluate post-mortem RNA degradation in hunter-harvested white-tailed deer to establish post-mortem intervals (PMIs) for RNA viability. We collected tissue (liver [LV], brain stem [BS], retropharyngeal lymph nodes [RPLN]) samples from 17 hunter-harvested deer in Hancock County, Illinois during the 2015 annual firearm season to estimate RNA stability. We collected tissues at predetermined PMIs (2, 8, 16, 24, 36, 48 hrs) and sent all samples to the University of Chicago for analysis. Results indicated RNA was stable through 24 hrs, though sample quality was low; average RNA integrity number (RIN) values ranged from 3.6–5.67. Our findings may be useful for creating a PMI for RNA quality in white-tailed deer, thereby aiding in future tissue collection for high-throughput sequencing techniques.

Wednesday February 8, 2017 10:20am - 10:40am
Grand Ballroom C

Attendees (5)