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McKee, B.D., Hong, C.S., Das, S. (2000). On the roles of heterochromatin and euchromatin in meiosis in Drosophila: mapping chromosomal pairing sites and testing candidate mutations for effects on X-Y nondisjunction and meiotic drive in male meiosis.  Genetica 109(1-2): 77--93.
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Mapping of pairing sites involved in meiotic homolog disjunction in Drosophila has led to conflicting hypotheses about the nature of such sites and the role of heterochromatin in meiotic pairing. In the female-specific distributive system, pairing regions appear to be exclusively heterochromatic and map to broad regions encompassing many different sequences. In male meiosis, autosomal pairing sites appear to be distributed broadly within euchromatin but to be absent from heterochromatin, whereas the X-pairing site maps in the centric heterochromatin. The X site has been shown to coincide with the intergenic spacer (IGS) repeats within the rDNA arrays shared between the X and Y. It has not been clear whether the heterochromatic location of this pairing site has any significance. A novel assay for genic modifiers of X-Y chromosome pairing was developed based on the intermediate nondisjunction levels observed in males whose X chromosome lacks the native pairing site but contains two transgenic insertions of single rDNA genes. This assay was used to test several mutations in Su(var) (Suppressor of position effect variegation), PcG (Polycomb-Group) recombination defective, and repair-defective genes. No strong effects on disjunction were seen. However, the tests did uncover several mutations that suppress or enhance the meiotic drive (distorted X-Y recovery ratio) that accompanies X-Y pairing failure.

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