No drama piranha

The red-bellied piranha, also known as the red piranha (Pygocentrus nattereri), is a species of piranha native to South America and a popular aquarium fish. Through media influence, the red-bellied piranha has developed a reputation as a ferocious predator, but scientists believe that the animals’ fearsome reputation has been exaggerated [1].


This week we are releasing the chromosome-length assembly for the red-bellied piranha, based on the work by W.C. Warren and M. Schartl [2]. We are grateful to Moody Gardens for the sample used for Hi-C library preparation!


Check out the alignments of the new assembly to the two most closely related fish genome assemblies out there: the Mexican tetra Astyanax mexicanus, from (McGaugh et al. Nat Commun., 2014), and the channel catfish Ictalurus punctatus, from (Liu et al. Nat Commun., 2016). Looks like the content of the chromosomes is largely preserved.

Whole genome alignments of the red-bellied piranha genome assembly to the assemblies of the Mexican tetra (left) and channel catfish (right).

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