Crab Eating Macaque
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The crab-eating macaque (Macaca fascicularis), also known as the Java macaque, or long-tailed macaque, is a species of primate located throughout Southeast Asia. The species is sexually dimorphic, so the crab-eating macaque weighs between 4.8 to 7 kg for males and 3 to 4kg for females. It has a body length of 43cm, and has a greyish-brown or reddish tail that extends up to 60cm beyond its body length. Color varies from grey-brown to reddish brown, fading away ventrally. Macaques inhabit a variety of habitats in southeastern Asia, but are often found near water due to their tendency to subsist off of crabs. The crab-eating macaques also consume fruits, flowers, insects, leaves, fungi and clay for its potassium. It eats for about 18.3 minutes at a time, and on average 20 times a day.
Like other primates, they communicate with a mixture of auditory, facial, and other physical gestures. The maximum lifespan is about 30 years; though in captivity a wild male was observed to live up to 39 years old. In 2010, the Beijing Genomics Institute used a female crab-eating macaque (CE) that was a captive-bred descendent of a crab-eating macaque from Vietnam for genome sequencing and analyses.We sequenced the nuclear genomes of the crab-eating macaqueon the IlluminaGAIIx platform. The sequencing data were processed with Illumina custom computational pipelines. The genome was de novo assembled using SOAPdenovo program based on the de Bruijn graph algorithm methods and obtained 162-Gb of high-quality sequence, representing 54-fold coverage. The total size of the assembled genome was about 2.85 Gb, providing 54-fold coverage on average. The scaffolds were assigned to the chromosomes according to the synteny displayed with the Indian rhesus macaque (IR) and human genome sequences. About 92% of the CE scaffolds could be placed onto chromosomes. This data can be found on the link provided.
Due to the frequent usage of the genus Macacain scientific research, we felt it necessary to sequence the crab-eating macaque to further our understanding on how it differed from other species, like the Chinese rhesus macaque (CR) and the Indian rhesus macaque. This is especially relevant considering the other sequenced macaque, the Indian rhesus macaque, has reduced in availability and so the CE and CR macaques are being used in its place. We hope that our genetic research will assist in understanding a species that has had little genetic information available up until now.
More information about Crab Eating Macaque can be viewed at: http://macaque.genomics.org.cn/