Bluefin tuna are high-performance swimmers and top predators in the open ocean. Their swimming is grounded by unique features including an exceptional glycolytic potential in white muscle, which is supported by high enzymatic activities. Here we performed high-throughput RNA sequencing (RNA-Seq) in muscles of the Pacific bluefin tuna (Thunnus orientalis) and Pacific cod (Gadus macrocephalus) and conducted a comparative transcriptomic analysis of genes related to energy production. We found that the total expression of glycolytic genes was much higher in the white muscle of tuna than in the other muscles, and that the expression of only six genes for glycolytic enzymes accounted for 83.4% of the total. These expression patterns were in good agreement with the patterns of enzyme activity previously reported. The findings suggest that the mRNA expression of glycolytic genes may contribute directly to the enzymatic activities in the muscles of tuna.
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