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Data from: Age estimation using methylation-sensitive high-resolution melting (MS-HRM) in both healthy felines and those with chronic kidney disease

Citation

Qi, Huiyuan et al. (2021), Data from: Age estimation using methylation-sensitive high-resolution melting (MS-HRM) in both healthy felines and those with chronic kidney disease, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.66t1g1k2t

Abstract

Age is an important ecological tool in wildlife conservation. However, it is difficult to estimate in most animals, including felines — most of whom are endangered. Here, we developed the first DNA methylation-based age-estimation technique — as an alternative to current age-estimation methods — for two feline species that share a relatively long genetic distance with each other: domestic cat (Felis catus; 79 blood samples) and an endangered Panthera, the snow leopard (Panthera uncia; 11 blood samples). We measured the methylation rates of two gene regions using methylation-sensitive high-resolution melting (MS-HRM). Domestic cat age was estimated with a mean absolute deviation (MAD) of 3.83 years. Health conditions influenced accuracy of the model. Specifically, the models built on cats with chronic kidney disease (CKD) had lower accuracy than those built on healthy cats. The snow leopard-specific model (i.e. the model that resets the model settings for snow leopards) had a better accuracy (MAD = 2.10 years) than that obtained on using the domestic cat model directly. This implies that our markers could be utilised across species, although changing the model settings when targeting different species could lead to better estimation accuracy. The snow leopard-specific model also successfully distinguished between sexually immature and mature individuals.

Usage Notes

The cat data and the snow leopard data csv files are the raw data used in the analysis.

The R script could be referred to in both the R markdown file and the pdf file.

Please refer to Readme file to see the detailed explanation for the datasets.

Funding

Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Award: 17K19426

Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Award: JP20H03008

Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Award: JPJSBP120219921

Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Award: JPJSBP120209915

Environmental Restoration and Conservation Agency, Award: JPMEERF20214001