WorldWideScience

Sample records for asynapsis

  1. Genetically enhanced asynapsis of autosomal chromatin promotes transcriptional dysregulation and meiotic failure.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Homolka, David; Jansa, Petr; Forejt, Jiri

    2012-02-01

    During meiosis, pairing of homologous chromosomes and their synapsis are essential prerequisites for normal male gametogenesis. Even limited autosomal asynapsis often leads to spermatogenic impairment, the mechanism of which is not fully understood. The present study was aimed at deliberately increasing the size of partial autosomal asynapsis and analysis of its impact on male meiosis. For this purpose, we studied the effect of t(12) haplotype encompassing four inversions on chromosome 17 on mouse autosomal translocation T(16;17)43H (abbreviated T43H). The T43H/T43H homozygotes were fully fertile in both sexes, while +/T43H heterozygous males, but not females, were sterile with meiotic arrest at late pachynema. Inclusion of the t(12) haplotype in trans to the T43H translocation resulted in enhanced asynapsis of the translocated autosome, ectopic phosphorylation of histone H2AX, persistence of RAD51 foci, and increased gene silencing around the translocation break. Increase was also on colocalization of unsynapsed chromatin with sex body. Remarkably, we found that transcriptional silencing of the unsynapsed autosomal chromatin precedes silencing of sex chromosomes. Based on the present knowledge, we conclude that interference of meiotic silencing of unsynapsed autosomes with meiotic sex chromosome inactivation is the most likely cause of asynapsis-related male sterility.

  2. Histone H2AFX Links Meiotic Chromosome Asynapsis to Prophase I Oocyte Loss in Mammals.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jeffrey M Cloutier

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Chromosome abnormalities are common in the human population, causing germ cell loss at meiotic prophase I and infertility. The mechanisms driving this loss are unknown, but persistent meiotic DNA damage and asynapsis may be triggers. Here we investigate the contribution of these lesions to oocyte elimination in mice with chromosome abnormalities, e.g. Turner syndrome (XO and translocations. We show that asynapsed chromosomes trigger oocyte elimination at diplonema, which is linked to the presence of phosphorylated H2AFX (γH2AFX. We find that DNA double-strand break (DSB foci disappear on asynapsed chromosomes during pachynema, excluding persistent DNA damage as a likely cause, and demonstrating the existence in mammalian oocytes of a repair pathway for asynapsis-associated DNA DSBs. Importantly, deletion or point mutation of H2afx restores oocyte numbers in XO females to wild type (XX levels. Unexpectedly, we find that asynapsed supernumerary chromosomes do not elicit prophase I loss, despite being enriched for γH2AFX and other checkpoint proteins. These results suggest that oocyte loss cannot be explained simply by asynapsis checkpoint models, but is related to the gene content of asynapsed chromosomes. A similar mechanistic basis for oocyte loss may operate in humans with chromosome abnormalities.

  3. Histone H2AFX Links Meiotic Chromosome Asynapsis to Prophase I Oocyte Loss in Mammals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cloutier, Jeffrey M; Mahadevaiah, Shantha K; ElInati, Elias; Nussenzweig, André; Tóth, Attila; Turner, James M A

    2015-10-01

    Chromosome abnormalities are common in the human population, causing germ cell loss at meiotic prophase I and infertility. The mechanisms driving this loss are unknown, but persistent meiotic DNA damage and asynapsis may be triggers. Here we investigate the contribution of these lesions to oocyte elimination in mice with chromosome abnormalities, e.g. Turner syndrome (XO) and translocations. We show that asynapsed chromosomes trigger oocyte elimination at diplonema, which is linked to the presence of phosphorylated H2AFX (γH2AFX). We find that DNA double-strand break (DSB) foci disappear on asynapsed chromosomes during pachynema, excluding persistent DNA damage as a likely cause, and demonstrating the existence in mammalian oocytes of a repair pathway for asynapsis-associated DNA DSBs. Importantly, deletion or point mutation of H2afx restores oocyte numbers in XO females to wild type (XX) levels. Unexpectedly, we find that asynapsed supernumerary chromosomes do not elicit prophase I loss, despite being enriched for γH2AFX and other checkpoint proteins. These results suggest that oocyte loss cannot be explained simply by asynapsis checkpoint models, but is related to the gene content of asynapsed chromosomes. A similar mechanistic basis for oocyte loss may operate in humans with chromosome abnormalities.

  4. Pachytene asynapsis drives meiotic sex chromosome inactivation and leads to substantial postmeiotic repression in spermatids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turner, James M A; Mahadevaiah, Shantha K; Ellis, Peter J I; Mitchell, Michael J; Burgoyne, Paul S

    2006-04-01

    Transcriptional silencing of the sex chromosomes during male meiosis (MSCI) is conserved among organisms with limited sex chromosome synapsis, including mammals. Since the 1990s the prevailing view has been that MSCI in mammals is transient, with sex chromosome reactivation occurring as cells exit meiosis. Recently, we found that any chromosome region unsynapsed during pachytene of male and female mouse meiosis is subject to transcriptional silencing (MSUC), and we hypothesized that MSCI is an inevitable consequence of this more general meiotic silencing mechanism. Here, we provide direct evidence that asynapsis does indeed drive MSCI. We also show that a substantial degree of transcriptional repression of the sex chromosomes is retained postmeiotically, and we provide evidence that this postmeiotic repression is a downstream consequence of MSCI/MSUC. While this postmeiotic repression occurs after the loss of MSUC-related proteins at the end of prophase, other histone modifications associated with transcriptional repression have by then become established.

  5. Extensive meiotic asynapsis in mice antagonises meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin and consequently disrupts meiotic sex chromosome inactivation

    OpenAIRE

    Mahadevaiah, Shantha K.; Bourc'his, Déborah; Dirk G de Rooij; Bestor, Timothy H; James M A Turner; Burgoyne, Paul S

    2008-01-01

    Chromosome synapsis during zygotene is a prerequisite for the timely homologous recombinational repair of meiotic DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). Unrepaired DSBs are thought to trigger apoptosis during midpachytene of male meiosis if synapsis fails. An early pachytene response to asynapsis is meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin (MSUC), which, in normal males, silences the X and Y chromosomes (meiotic sex chromosome inactivation [MSCI]). In this study, we show that MSUC occurs in Spo11-...

  6. Extensive meiotic asynapsis in mice antagonises meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin and consequently disrupts meiotic sex chromosome inactivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahadevaiah, Shantha K; Bourc'his, Déborah; de Rooij, Dirk G; Bestor, Timothy H; Turner, James M A; Burgoyne, Paul S

    2008-07-28

    Chromosome synapsis during zygotene is a prerequisite for the timely homologous recombinational repair of meiotic DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs). Unrepaired DSBs are thought to trigger apoptosis during midpachytene of male meiosis if synapsis fails. An early pachytene response to asynapsis is meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin (MSUC), which, in normal males, silences the X and Y chromosomes (meiotic sex chromosome inactivation [MSCI]). In this study, we show that MSUC occurs in Spo11-null mouse spermatocytes with extensive asynapsis but lacking meiotic DSBs. In contrast, three mutants (Dnmt3l, Msh5, and Dmc1) with high levels of asynapsis and numerous persistent unrepaired DSBs have a severely impaired MSUC response. We suggest that MSUC-related proteins, including the MSUC initiator BRCA1, are sequestered at unrepaired DSBs. All four mutants fail to silence the X and Y chromosomes (MSCI failure), which is sufficient to explain the midpachytene apoptosis. Apoptosis does not occur in mice with a single additional asynapsed chromosome with unrepaired meiotic DSBs and no disturbance of MSCI.

  7. Evidence that sex chromosome asynapsis, rather than excess Y gene dosage, is responsible for the meiotic impairment of XYY mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, T A; Burgoyne, P S

    2000-01-01

    There is extensive evidence for the existence of a meiotic checkpoint that acts to eliminate spermatocytes that fail to achieve full sex chromosome synapsis at the pachytene stage of the first meiotic prophase. XYY mice are nearly always sterile, with clear signs of meiotic impairment, and sex chromosome asynapsis has been proposed to underlie this impairment. However, a study of XYY*(X) mice (mice having three sex chromosomes but only a single dose of Y genes) revealed that these mice are fertile, and thus implicated Y gene dosage as a major factor in the sterility of XYY mice. To address this question further, sex chromosome synapsis and spermatogenic proficiency were compared between XYY*(X) and XYY mice generated in the same litters. This established that differences in spermatogenic proficiency within and between the two genotypes correlated with the frequency of radial trivalent formation (full sex chromosome synapsis); XYY*(X) males, as a group, had double the radial trivalent frequency of XYY males. This observation provides strong support for the view that sex chromosome asynapsis (or some consequence thereof), rather than Y gene dosage, is the major factor leading to the meiotic impairment of XYY mice.

  8. Meiotic DNA double-strand breaks and chromosome asynapsis in mice are monitored by distinct HORMAD2-independent and -dependent mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wojtasz, Lukasz; Cloutier, Jeffrey M; Baumann, Marek; Daniel, Katrin; Varga, János; Fu, Jun; Anastassiadis, Konstantinos; Stewart, A Francis; Reményi, Attila; Turner, James M A; Tóth, Attila

    2012-05-01

    Meiotic crossover formation involves the repair of programmed DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) and synaptonemal complex (SC) formation. Completion of these processes must precede the meiotic divisions in order to avoid chromosome abnormalities in gametes. Enduring key questions in meiosis have been how meiotic progression and crossover formation are coordinated, whether inappropriate asynapsis is monitored, and whether asynapsis elicits prophase arrest via mechanisms that are distinct from the surveillance of unrepaired DNA DSBs. We disrupted the meiosis-specific mouse HORMAD2 (Hop1, Rev7, and Mad2 domain 2) protein, which preferentially associates with unsynapsed chromosome axes. We show that HORMAD2 is required for the accumulation of the checkpoint kinase ATR along unsynapsed axes, but not at DNA DSBs or on DNA DSB-associated chromatin loops. Consistent with the hypothesis that ATR activity on chromatin plays important roles in the quality control of meiotic prophase, HORMAD2 is required for the elimination of the asynaptic Spo11(-/-), but not the asynaptic and DSB repair-defective Dmc1(-/-) oocytes. Our observations strongly suggest that HORMAD2-dependent recruitment of ATR to unsynapsed chromosome axes constitutes a mechanism for the surveillance of asynapsis. Thus, we provide convincing evidence for the existence of a distinct asynapsis surveillance mechanism that safeguards the ploidy of the mammalian germline.

  9. Increased frequency of asynapsis and associated meiotic silencing of heterologous chromatin in the presence of irradiation-induced extra DNA double strand breaks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schoenmakers, Sam; Wassenaar, Evelyne; van Cappellen, Wiggert A; Derijck, Alwin A; de Boer, Peter; Laven, Joop S E; Grootegoed, J Anton; Baarends, Willy M

    2008-05-01

    In meiotic prophase of male placental mammals, the heterologous X and Y chromosomes remain largely unsynapsed, which activates meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI), leading to formation of the transcriptionally silenced XY body. MSCI is most likely related to meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin (MSUC), a mechanism that can silence autosomal unsynapsed chromatin. However, heterologous synapsis and escape from silencing also occur. In mammalian species, formation of DNA double strand breaks (DSBs) during leptotene precedes meiotic chromosome pairing. These DSBs are essential to achieve full synapsis of homologous chromosomes. We generated 25% extra meiotic DSBs by whole body irradiation of mice. This leads to a significant increase in meiotic recombination frequency. In mice carrying translocation chromosomes with synaptic problems, we observed an approximately 35% increase in asynapsis and MSUC of the nonhomologous region in the smallest chromosome pair following irradiation. However, the same nonhomologous region in the largest chromosome pair, shows complete synapsis and escape from MSUC in almost 100% of the nuclei, irrespective of exposure to irradiation. We propose that prevention of synapsis and associated activation of MSUC is linked to the presence of unrepaired meiotic DSBs in the nonhomologous region. Also, spreading of synaptonemal complex formation from regions of homology may act as an opposing force, and drive heterologous synapsis.

  10. Histone H2AFX Links Meiotic Chromosome Asynapsis to Prophase I Oocyte Loss in Mammals.

    OpenAIRE

    Cloutier, Jeffrey M.; Mahadevaiah, Shantha K.; Elias ElInati; André Nussenzweig; Attila Tóth; James M A Turner

    2015-01-01

    Author Summary Chromosome abnormalities, such as aneuploidies and structural variants (i.e. translocations, inversions), are strikingly common in the human population, causing disorders such as Down syndrome and Turner syndrome. One important consequence of chromosome abnormalities in mammals is errors during meiosis, the specialized cell division that generates sperm and eggs for reproduction. As a result of these meiotic errors, patients with chromosome abnormalities oftentimes suffer from ...

  11. Increased frequency of asynapsis and associated meiotic silencing of heterologous chromatin in the presence of irradiation-induced extra DNA double strand breaks.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schoenmakers, S.; Wassenaar, E.; Cappellen, W.A. van; Derijck, A.A.; Boer, P. de; Laven, J.S.E.; Grootegoed, J.A.; Baarends, W.M.

    2008-01-01

    In meiotic prophase of male placental mammals, the heterologous X and Y chromosomes remain largely unsynapsed, which activates meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI), leading to formation of the transcriptionally silenced XY body. MSCI is most likely related to meiotic silencing of unsynapsed ch

  12. Mechanistic basis of infertility of mouse intersubspecific hybrids.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bhattacharyya, Tanmoy; Gregorova, Sona; Mihola, Ondrej; Anger, Martin; Sebestova, Jaroslava; Denny, Paul; Simecek, Petr; Forejt, Jiri

    2013-02-01

    According to the Dobzhansky-Muller model, hybrid sterility is a consequence of the independent evolution of related taxa resulting in incompatible genomic interactions of their hybrids. The model implies that the incompatibilities evolve randomly, unless a particular gene or nongenic sequence diverges much faster than the rest of the genome. Here we propose that asynapsis of heterospecific chromosomes in meiotic prophase provides a recurrently evolving trigger for the meiotic arrest of interspecific F1 hybrids. We observed extensive asynapsis of chromosomes and disturbance of the sex body in >95% of pachynemas of Mus m. musculus × Mus m. domesticus sterile F1 males. Asynapsis was not preceded by a failure of double-strand break induction, and the rate of meiotic crossing over was not affected in synapsed chromosomes. DNA double-strand break repair was delayed or failed in unsynapsed autosomes, and misexpression of chromosome X and chromosome Y genes was detected in single pachynemas and by genome-wide expression profiling. Oocytes of F1 hybrid females showed the same kind of synaptic problems but with the incidence reduced to half. Most of the oocytes with pachytene asynapsis were eliminated before birth. We propose the heterospecific pairing of homologous chromosomes as a preexisting condition of asynapsis in interspecific hybrids. The asynapsis may represent a universal mechanistic basis of F1 hybrid sterility manifested by pachytene arrest. It is tempting to speculate that a fast-evolving subset of the noncoding genomic sequence important for chromosome pairing and synapsis may be the culprit.

  13. Caenorhabditis elegans histone methyltransferase MET-2 shields the male X chromosome from checkpoint machinery and mediates meiotic sex chromosome inactivation.

    OpenAIRE

    Checchi, Paula M.; JoAnne Engebrecht

    2011-01-01

    Meiosis is a specialized form of cellular division that results in the precise halving of the genome to produce gametes for sexual reproduction. Checkpoints function during meiosis to detect errors and subsequently to activate a signaling cascade that prevents the formation of aneuploid gametes. Indeed, asynapsis of a homologous chromosome pair elicits a checkpoint response that can in turn trigger germline apoptosis. In a heterogametic germ line, however, sex chromosomes proceed through meio...

  14. Analysis of the epigenetics of meiotic silencing and its role in germ cell loss

    OpenAIRE

    Cloutier, J.

    2016-01-01

    Numerical and structural chromosome abnormalities are common in the human population and cause infertility associated with germ cell losses during meiotic prophase I. The precise trigger of germ cell loss in response to chromosome abnormalities in mammals is still unclear, but several models have been postulated, including a DNA damage checkpoint, an asynapsis checkpoint, and meiotic silencing of asynapsed chromosomes. Here, I investigate the contribution of these mechanisms to oocyte loss in...

  15. X chromosome control of meiotic chromosome synapsis in mouse inter-subspecific hybrids.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tanmoy Bhattacharyya

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available Hybrid sterility (HS belongs to reproductive isolation barriers that safeguard the integrity of species in statu nascendi. Although hybrid sterility occurs almost universally among animal and plant species, most of our current knowledge comes from the classical genetic studies on Drosophila interspecific crosses or introgressions. With the house mouse subspecies Mus m. musculus and Mus m. domesticus as a model, new research tools have become available for studies of the molecular mechanisms and genetic networks underlying HS. Here we used QTL analysis and intersubspecific chromosome substitution strains to identify a 4.7 Mb critical region on Chromosome X (Chr X harboring the Hstx2 HS locus, which causes asymmetrical spermatogenic arrest in reciprocal intersubspecific F1 hybrids. Subsequently, we mapped autosomal loci on Chrs 3, 9 and 13 that can abolish this asymmetry. Combination of immunofluorescent visualization of the proteins of synaptonemal complexes with whole-chromosome DNA FISH on pachytene spreads revealed that heterosubspecific, unlike consubspecific, homologous chromosomes are predisposed to asynapsis in F1 hybrid male and female meiosis. The asynapsis is under the trans- control of Hstx2 and Hst1/Prdm9 hybrid sterility genes in pachynemas of male but not female hybrids. The finding concurred with the fertility of intersubpecific F1 hybrid females homozygous for the Hstx2(Mmm allele and resolved the apparent conflict with the dominance theory of Haldane's rule. We propose that meiotic asynapsis in intersubspecific hybrids is a consequence of cis-acting mismatch between homologous chromosomes modulated by the trans-acting Hstx2 and Prdm9 hybrid male sterility genes.

  16. AGO4 regulates entry into meiosis and influences silencing of sex chromosomes in the male mouse germline.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Modzelewski, Andrew J; Holmes, Rebecca J; Hilz, Stephanie; Grimson, Andrew; Cohen, Paula E

    2012-08-14

    The four mammalian Argonaute family members are thought to share redundant functions in the microRNA pathway, yet only AGO2 possesses the catalytic "slicer" function required for RNAi. Whether AGO1, AGO3, or AGO4 possesses specialized functions remains unclear. Here we show that AGO4 localizes to spermatocyte nuclei during meiotic prophase I, specifically at sites of asynapsis and the transcriptionally silenced XY subdomain, the sex body. We generated Ago4 knockout mice and show that Ago4(-/-) spermatogonia initiate meiosis early, resulting from premature induction of retinoic acid-response genes. During prophase I, the sex body assembles incorrectly in Ago4(-/-) mice, leading to disrupted meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI). This is associated with a dramatic loss of microRNAs, >20% of which arises from the X chromosome. Thus, AGO4 regulates meiotic entry and MSCI in mammalian germ cells, implicating small RNA pathways in these processes.

  17. Cytogenetic evidence for a species complex within Anopheles pseudopunctipennis theobald (Diptera: Culicidae).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Coetzee, M; Estrada-Franco, J G; Wunderlich, C A; Hunt, R H

    1999-04-01

    Anopheles pseudopunctipennis was collected from Acapulco, Mexico and Sallee River, Grenada, West Indies and used in cross-mating experiments. Larvae from the cross, Mexico female X Grenada male, died in the third instar. However, adult progeny were obtained from the reciprocal cross Grenada female x Mexico male. These hybrid males had testes with apparently normal appearance but some without viable sperm. Polytene chromosomes obtained from hybrid females exhibited extensive asynapsis of the X chromosomes. Previously undescribed fixed inversion differences between the two populations were noted on the X chromosome. It is concluded that the two populations belong to different species. The Grenada population is designated An. pseudopunctipennis species C, since it is the third taxon recognized in this species complex.

  18. Meiotic studies of some South African cultivars of Lantana camara (Verbenaceae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. J. Spies

    1982-12-01

    Full Text Available Lantana camara L. is a polyploid species with a basic chromosome number of 11 (x = l l . Chromosome association in 39 cultivars indicated the occurrence of univalents to heptavalents with bivalents predominating. Multivalent association analysis revealed the presence in South Africa of at least four different groups of L. camara at the diploid level. The potential for sexual reproduction must exist, at least at the diploid level, to account for differences in chromosomal behaviour that can only be attributed to hybridization. The possibility exists that the basic chromosome number may be lower than 11, or else postspeciation genomic evolution must have occurred. No cytogenetical correlation exists between the South African and Indian cultivars. The number of chiasmata per genome increases with an increase in the polyploid level. Most multivalents are of the chain type. Univalents during diakinesis are the result of asynapsis. Triploid and pentaploid plants display a markedly abnormal meiosis.  L. camara is a segmental allopolyploid species.

  19. [Seasonal variability of the karyotype structure of Chironomus plumosus (Diptera, Chironomidae) from a biotope of Kaliningrad].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petrova, N A; Vinokurova, N V; Danilova, M V; Maslova, V V

    2007-01-01

    Chironomus plumosus larvae from the polluted Shkolnoe lake, Kaliningrad, have 2n = 8 and 2n = 8 + B. In winter season we found 11 types of hetero- and homozygous inversions in A, B, C, D, E, and F arms whereas in summer season we registered 7 types of the same inversions in A, B, C, D, and E arms. All inversions with exception of the inversion in arm C correspond to Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium. The arm IVG shows homozygous increase of centromeric heterochromatin more frequently in summer than in winter (34.4% as compared with 1.8%). The arm E has asynapsis 2 times less frequently in summer than in winter (21.4% as compared with 44.6%).

  20. Ex-vivo assessment of chronic toxicity of low levels of cadmium on testicular meiotic cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geoffroy-Siraudin, Cendrine; Perrard, Marie-Hélène; Ghalamoun-Slaimi, Rahma; Ali, Sazan; Chaspoul, Florence; Lanteaume, André; Achard, Vincent; Gallice, Philippe; Durand, Philippe; Guichaoua, Marie-Roberte

    2012-08-01

    Using a validated model of culture of rat seminiferous tubules, we assessed the effects of 0.1, 1 and 10 μg/L cadmium (Cd) on spermatogenic cells over a 2-week culture period. With concentrations of 1 and 10 μg/L in the culture medium, the Cd concentration in the cells, determined by ICP-MS, increased with concentration in the medium and the day of culture. Flow cytometric analysis enabled us to evaluate changes in the number of Sertoli cells and germ cells during the culture period. The number of Sertoli cells did not appear to be affected by Cd. By contrast, spermatogonia and meiotic cells were decreased by 1 and 10 μg/L Cd in a time and dose dependent manner. Stage distribution of the meiotic prophase I and qualitative study of the synaptonemal complexes (SC) at the pachytene stage were performed by immunocytochemistry with an anti SCP3 antibody. Cd caused a time-and-dose-dependent increase of total abnormalities, of fragmented SC and of asynapsis from concentration of 0.1 μg/L. Additionally, we observed a new SC abnormality, the "motheaten" SC. This abnormality is frequently associated with asynapsis and SC widening which increased with both the Cd concentration and the duration of exposure. This abnormality suggests that Cd disrupts the structure and function of proteins involved in pairing and/or meiotic recombination. These results show that Cd induces dose-and-time-dependent alterations of the meiotic process of spermatogenesis ex-vivo, and that the lowest metal concentration, which induces an adverse effect, may vary with the cell parameter studied.

  1. Ex-vivo assessment of chronic toxicity of low levels of cadmium on testicular meiotic cells

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Geoffroy-Siraudin, Cendrine [Aix-Marseille Univ, UMR CNRS IMBE 7263, FR 3098 ECCOREV, 13005, Marseille (France); Laboratoire de Biologie de la Reproduction, AP-HM, Hôpital de la Conception, 147, Boulevard Baille, 13385 Marseille cedex 5 (France); Perrard, Marie-Hélène [Institut de Génomique Fonctionnelle de Lyon, UMR 5242 CNRS INRA Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon 1, 46 allée d' Italie, F-69364 Lyon Cedex 07 (France); Ghalamoun-Slaimi, Rahma [Aix-Marseille Univ, UMR CNRS IMBE 7263, FR 3098 ECCOREV, 13005, Marseille (France); Laboratoire de Biologie de la Reproduction, AP-HM, Hôpital de la Conception, 147, Boulevard Baille, 13385 Marseille cedex 5 (France); Ali, Sazan [Aix-Marseille Univ, UMR CNRS IMBE 7263, FR 3098 ECCOREV, 13005, Marseille (France); Chaspoul, Florence [Aix-Marseille Univ, UMR CNRS IMBE 7263, FR 3098 ECCOREV, 13005, Marseille (France); Unité de Chimie-Physique, Faculté de Pharmacie 13005, Marseille (France); Lanteaume, André [Aix-Marseille Univ, UMR CNRS IMBE 7263, FR 3098 ECCOREV, 13005, Marseille (France); Achard, Vincent [Laboratoire de Biologie de la Reproduction, AP-HM, Hôpital de la Conception, 147, Boulevard Baille, 13385 Marseille cedex 5 (France); Gallice, Philippe [Aix-Marseille Univ, UMR CNRS IMBE 7263, FR 3098 ECCOREV, 13005, Marseille (France); Unité de Chimie-Physique, Faculté de Pharmacie 13005, Marseille (France); Durand, Philippe [Institut de Génomique Fonctionnelle de Lyon, UMR 5242 CNRS INRA Ecole Normale Supérieure de Lyon 1, 46 allée d' Italie, F-69364 Lyon Cedex 07 (France); and others

    2012-08-01

    Using a validated model of culture of rat seminiferous tubules, we assessed the effects of 0.1, 1 and 10 μg/L cadmium (Cd) on spermatogenic cells over a 2‐week culture period. With concentrations of 1 and 10 μg/L in the culture medium, the Cd concentration in the cells, determined by ICP-MS, increased with concentration in the medium and the day of culture. Flow cytometric analysis enabled us to evaluate changes in the number of Sertoli cells and germ cells during the culture period. The number of Sertoli cells did not appear to be affected by Cd. By contrast, spermatogonia and meiotic cells were decreased by 1 and 10 μg/L Cd in a time and dose dependent manner. Stage distribution of the meiotic prophase I and qualitative study of the synaptonemal complexes (SC) at the pachytene stage were performed by immunocytochemistry with an anti SCP3 antibody. Cd caused a time-and-dose-dependent increase of total abnormalities, of fragmented SC and of asynapsis from concentration of 0.1 μg/L. Additionally, we observed a new SC abnormality, the “motheaten” SC. This abnormality is frequently associated with asynapsis and SC widening which increased with both the Cd concentration and the duration of exposure. This abnormality suggests that Cd disrupts the structure and function of proteins involved in pairing and/or meiotic recombination. These results show that Cd induces dose-and-time-dependent alterations of the meiotic process of spermatogenesis ex-vivo, and that the lowest metal concentration, which induces an adverse effect, may vary with the cell parameter studied. -- Highlights: ► Cadmium induces ex-vivo severe time- and dose-dependent germ cell abnormalities. ► Cadmium at very low concentration (0.1 µg/l) induces synaptonemal complex abnormalities. ► The lowest concentration inducing adverse effect varied with the cell parameter studied. ► Cadmium alters proteins involved in pairing and recombination. ► Cadmium leads to achiasmate univalents and

  2. Phosphorylation of CDK2 on threonine 160 influences silencing of sex chromosome during male meiosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lu; Liu, Wenjing; Zhao, Weidong; Song, Gendi; Wang, Guishuan; Wang, Xiaorong; Sun, Fei

    2014-06-01

    In mammalian meiosis, the X and Y chromosomes are largely unsynapsed and transcriptionally silenced during the pachytene stage of meiotic prophase (meiotic sex chromosome inactivation), forming a specialized nuclear territory called sex or XY body. An increasing number of proteins and noncoding RNAs were found to localize to the sex body and take part in influencing expression of sex chromosome genes. Cyclin-dependent kinase 2 (Cdk2 (-/-)) spermatocytes show incomplete sex chromosome pairing. Here, we further showed that phosphorylation of CDK2 isoform 1 (p-CDK2(39) [39 kDa]) on threonine 160 localizes to the sites of asynapsis and the sex body, interacting with phosphorylated gamma-H2AX. Meanwhile, p-CDK2(39) is frequently mislocalized throughout the sex body, and meiotic sex chromosome inactivation is disrupted in PWK×C57BL/6J hybrid mice. Furthermore, pachytene spermatocytes treated with mevastatin (an inhibitor of p-CDK2) showed overexpression of sex chromosome-linked genes. Our results highlight an important role for p-CDK2(39) in influencing silencing of the sex chromosomes during male meiosis by interacting with gamma-H2AX.

  3. Caenorhabditis elegans histone methyltransferase MET-2 shields the male X chromosome from checkpoint machinery and mediates meiotic sex chromosome inactivation.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paula M Checchi

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Meiosis is a specialized form of cellular division that results in the precise halving of the genome to produce gametes for sexual reproduction. Checkpoints function during meiosis to detect errors and subsequently to activate a signaling cascade that prevents the formation of aneuploid gametes. Indeed, asynapsis of a homologous chromosome pair elicits a checkpoint response that can in turn trigger germline apoptosis. In a heterogametic germ line, however, sex chromosomes proceed through meiosis with unsynapsed regions and are not recognized by checkpoint machinery. We conducted a directed RNAi screen in Caenorhabditis elegans to identify regulatory factors that prevent recognition of heteromorphic sex chromosomes as unpaired and uncovered a role for the SET domain histone H3 lysine 9 histone methyltransferase (HMTase MET-2 and two additional HMTases in shielding the male X from checkpoint machinery. We found that MET-2 also mediates the transcriptional silencing program of meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI but not meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin (MSUC, suggesting that these processes are distinct. Further, MSCI and checkpoint shielding can be uncoupled, as double-strand breaks targeted to an unpaired, transcriptionally silenced extra-chromosomal array induce checkpoint activation in germ lines depleted for met-2. In summary, our data uncover a mechanism by which repressive chromatin architecture enables checkpoint proteins to distinguish between the partnerless male X chromosome and asynapsed chromosomes thereby shielding the lone X from inappropriate activation of an apoptotic program.

  4. Evidence that meiotic sex chromosome inactivation is essential for male fertility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Royo, Hélène; Polikiewicz, Grzegorz; Mahadevaiah, Shantha K; Prosser, Haydn; Mitchell, Mike; Bradley, Allan; de Rooij, Dirk G; Burgoyne, Paul S; Turner, James M A

    2010-12-07

    The mammalian X and Y chromosomes share little homology and are largely unsynapsed during normal meiosis. This asynapsis triggers inactivation of X- and Y-linked genes, or meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI). Whether MSCI is essential for male meiosis is unclear. Pachytene arrest and apoptosis is observed in mouse mutants in which MSCI fails, e.g., Brca1(-/-), H2afx(-/-), Sycp1(-/-), and Msh5(-/-). However, these also harbor defects in synapsis and/or recombination and as such may activate a putative pachytene checkpoint. Here we present evidence that MSCI failure is sufficient to cause pachytene arrest. XYY males exhibit Y-Y synapsis and Y chromosomal escape from MSCI without accompanying synapsis/recombination defects. We find that XYY males, like synapsis/recombination mutants, display pachytene arrest and that this can be circumvented by preventing Y-Y synapsis and associated Y gene expression. Pachytene expression of individual Y genes inserted as transgenes on autosomes shows that expression of the Zfy 1/2 paralogs in XY males is sufficient to phenocopy the pachytene arrest phenotype; insertion of Zfy 1/2 on the X chromosome where they are subject to MSCI prevents this response. Our findings show that MSCI is essential for male meiosis and, as such, provide insight into the differential severity of meiotic mutations' effects on male and female meiosis.

  5. Caenorhabditis elegans histone methyltransferase MET-2 shields the male X chromosome from checkpoint machinery and mediates meiotic sex chromosome inactivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Checchi, Paula M; Engebrecht, JoAnne

    2011-09-01

    Meiosis is a specialized form of cellular division that results in the precise halving of the genome to produce gametes for sexual reproduction. Checkpoints function during meiosis to detect errors and subsequently to activate a signaling cascade that prevents the formation of aneuploid gametes. Indeed, asynapsis of a homologous chromosome pair elicits a checkpoint response that can in turn trigger germline apoptosis. In a heterogametic germ line, however, sex chromosomes proceed through meiosis with unsynapsed regions and are not recognized by checkpoint machinery. We conducted a directed RNAi screen in Caenorhabditis elegans to identify regulatory factors that prevent recognition of heteromorphic sex chromosomes as unpaired and uncovered a role for the SET domain histone H3 lysine 9 histone methyltransferase (HMTase) MET-2 and two additional HMTases in shielding the male X from checkpoint machinery. We found that MET-2 also mediates the transcriptional silencing program of meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI) but not meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin (MSUC), suggesting that these processes are distinct. Further, MSCI and checkpoint shielding can be uncoupled, as double-strand breaks targeted to an unpaired, transcriptionally silenced extra-chromosomal array induce checkpoint activation in germ lines depleted for met-2. In summary, our data uncover a mechanism by which repressive chromatin architecture enables checkpoint proteins to distinguish between the partnerless male X chromosome and asynapsed chromosomes thereby shielding the lone X from inappropriate activation of an apoptotic program.

  6. Chromosomal rearrangement interferes with meiotic X chromosome inactivation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Homolka, David; Ivanek, Robert; Capkova, Jana; Jansa, Petr; Forejt, Jiri

    2007-10-01

    Heterozygosity for certain mouse and human chromosomal rearrangements is characterized by the incomplete meiotic synapsis of rearranged chromosomes, by their colocalization with the XY body in primary spermatocytes, and by male-limited sterility. Previously, we argued that such X-autosomal associations could interfere with meiotic sex chromosome inactivation. Recently, supporting evidence has reported modifications of histones in rearranged chromosomes by a process called the meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin (MSUC). Here, we report on the transcriptional down-regulation of genes within the unsynapsed region of the rearranged mouse chromosome 17, and on the subsequent disturbance of X chromosome inactivation. The partial transcriptional suppression of genes in the unsynapsed chromatin was most prominent prior to the mid-pachytene stage of primary spermatocytes. Later, during the mid-late pachytene, the rearranged autosomes colocalized with the XY body, and the X chromosome failed to undergo proper transcriptional silencing. Our findings provide direct evidence on the MSUC acting at the mRNA level, and implicate that autosomal asynapsis in meiosis may cause male sterility by interfering with meiotic sex chromosome inactivation.

  7. Meiotic failure in male mice lacking an X-linked factor.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, Fang; Gell, Katarina; van der Heijden, Godfried W; Eckardt, Sigrid; Leu, N Adrian; Page, David C; Benavente, Ricardo; Her, Chengtao; Höög, Christer; McLaughlin, K John; Wang, Peijing Jeremy

    2008-03-01

    Meiotic silencing of sex chromosomes may cause their depletion of meiosis-specific genes during evolution. Here, we challenge this hypothesis by reporting the identification of TEX11 as the first X-encoded meiosis-specific factor in mice. TEX11 forms discrete foci on synapsed regions of meiotic chromosomes and appears to be a novel constituent of meiotic nodules involved in recombination. Loss of TEX11 function causes chromosomal asynapsis and reduced crossover formation, leading to elimination of spermatocytes, respectively, at the pachytene and anaphase I stages. Specifically, TEX11-deficient spermatocytes with asynapsed autosomes undergo apoptosis at the pachytene stage, while those with only asynapsed sex chromosomes progress. However, cells that survive the pachytene stage display chromosome nondisjunction at the first meiotic division, resulting in cell death and male infertility. TEX11 interacts with SYCP2, which is an integral component of the synaptonemal complex lateral elements. Thus, TEX11 promotes initiation and/or maintenance of synapsis and formation of crossovers, and may provide a physical link between these two meiotic processes.

  8. A link between meiotic prophase progression and crossover control.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter M Carlton

    2006-02-01

    Full Text Available During meiosis, most organisms ensure that homologous chromosomes undergo at least one exchange of DNA, or crossover, to link chromosomes together and accomplish proper segregation. How each chromosome receives a minimum of one crossover is unknown. During early meiosis in Caenorhabditis elegans and many other species, chromosomes adopt a polarized organization within the nucleus, which normally disappears upon completion of homolog synapsis. Mutations that impair synapsis even between a single pair of chromosomes in C. elegans delay this nuclear reorganization. We quantified this delay by developing a classification scheme for discrete stages of meiosis. Immunofluorescence localization of RAD-51 protein revealed that delayed meiotic cells also contained persistent recombination intermediates. Through genetic analysis, we found that this cytological delay in meiotic progression requires double-strand breaks and the function of the crossover-promoting heteroduplex HIM-14 (Msh4 and MSH-5. Failure of X chromosome synapsis also resulted in impaired crossover control on autosomes, which may result from greater numbers and persistence of recombination intermediates in the delayed nuclei. We conclude that maturation of recombination events on chromosomes promotes meiotic progression, and is coupled to the regulation of crossover number and placement. Our results have broad implications for the interpretation of meiotic mutants, as we have shown that asynapsis of a single chromosome pair can exert global effects on meiotic progression and recombination frequency.

  9. Abnormal pairing of X and Y sex chromosomes during meiosis I in interspecific hybrids of Phodopus campbelli and P. sungorus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ishishita, Satoshi; Tsuboi, Kazuma; Ohishi, Namiko; Tsuchiya, Kimiyuki; Matsuda, Yoichi

    2015-03-24

    Hybrid sterility plays an important role in the maintenance of species identity and promotion of speciation. Male interspecific hybrids from crosses between Campbell's dwarf hamster (Phodopus campbelli) and the Djungarian hamster (P. sungorus) exhibit sterility with abnormal spermatogenesis. However, the meiotic phenotype of these hybrids has not been well described. In the present work, we observed the accumulation of spermatocytes and apoptosis of spermatocyte-like cells in the testes of hybrids between P. campbelli females and P. sungorus males. In hybrid spermatocytes, a high frequency of asynapsis of X and Y chromosomes during the pachytene-like stage and dissociation of these chromosomes during metaphase I (MI) was observed. No autosomal univalency was observed during pachytene-like and MI stages in the hybrids; however, a low frequency of synapsis between autosomes and X or Y chromosomes, interlocking and partial synapsis between autosomal pairs, and γ-H2AFX staining in autosomal chromatin was observed during the pachytene-like stage. Degenerated MI-like nuclei were frequently observed in the hybrids. Most of the spermatozoa in hybrid epididymides exhibited head malformation. These results indicate that the pairing of X and Y chromosomes is more adversely affected than that of autosomes in Phodopus hybrids.

  10. Proteomic Analysis of Pachytene Spermatocytes of Sterile Hybrid Male Mice.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Lu; Guo, Yueshuai; Liu, Wenjing; Zhao, Weidong; Song, Gendi; Zhou, Tao; Huang, Hefeng; Guo, Xuejiang; Sun, Fei

    2016-09-01

    Incompatibilities in interspecific hybrids, such as reduced hybrid fertility and lethality, are common features resulting from reproductive isolation that lead to speciation. Subspecies crosses of house mice produce offspring in which one sex is infertile or absent, yet the molecular mechanisms of hybrid sterility are poorly understood. In this study, we observed extensive asynapsis of chromosomes and disturbance of the sex body in pachytene spermatocytes of sterile F1 males (PWK/Ph female × C57BL/6J male). We report the high-confidence identification of 4005 proteins in the pachytene spermatocytes of fertile F1 males (PWK/Ph male × C57BL/6J female) and sterile F1 males (PWK/Ph female × C57BL/6J male), of which 215 were upregulated and 381 were downregulated. Bioinformatics analysis of the proteome led to the identification of 43 and 59 proteins known to be essential for male meiosis and spermatogenesis in mice, respectively. Characterization of the proteome of pachytene spermatocytes associated with hybrid male sterility provides an inventory of proteins that is useful for understanding meiosis and the mechanisms of hybrid male infertility.

  11. A Link between Meiotic Prophase Progression and CrossoverControl

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Carlton, Peter M.; Farruggio, Alfonso P.; Dernburg, Abby F.

    2005-07-06

    During meiosis, most organisms ensure that homologous chromosomes undergo at least one exchange of DNA, or crossover, to link chromosomes together and accomplish proper segregation. How each chromosome receives a minimum of one crossover is unknown. During early meiosis in Caenorhabditis elegans and many other species, chromosomes adopt a polarized organization within the nucleus, which normally disappears upon completion of homolog synapsis. Mutations that impair synapsis even between a single pair of chromosomes in C. elegans delay this nuclear reorganization. We quantified this delay by developing a classification scheme for discrete stages of meiosis. Immunofluorescence localization of RAD-51 protein revealed that delayed meiotic cells also contained persistent recombination intermediates. Through genetic analysis, we found that this cytological delay in meiotic progression requires double-strand breaks and the function of the crossover-promoting heteroduplex HIM-14 (Msh4) and MSH-5. Failure of X chromosome synapsis also resulted in impaired crossover control on autosomes, which may result from greater numbers and persistence of recombination intermediates in the delayed nuclei. We conclude that maturation of recombination events on chromosomes promotes meiotic progression, and is coupled to the regulation of crossover number and placement. Our results have broad implications for the interpretation of meiotic mutants, as we have shown that asynapsis of a single chromosome pair can exert global effects on meiotic progression and recombination frequency.

  12. The ubiquitin ligase Ubr2, a recognition E3 component of the N-end rule pathway, stabilizes Tex19.1 during spermatogenesis.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fang Yang

    Full Text Available Ubiquitin E3 ligases target their substrates for ubiquitination, leading to proteasome-mediated degradation or altered biochemical properties. The ubiquitin ligase Ubr2, a recognition E3 component of the N-end rule proteolytic pathway, recognizes proteins with N-terminal destabilizing residues and plays an important role in spermatogenesis. Tex19.1 (also known as Tex19 has been previously identified as a germ cell-specific protein in mouse testis. Here we report that Tex19.1 forms a stable protein complex with Ubr2 in mouse testes. The binding of Tex19.1 to Ubr2 is independent of the second position cysteine of Tex19.1, a putative target for arginylation by the N-end rule pathway R-transferase. The Tex19.1-null mouse mutant phenocopies the Ubr2-deficient mutant in three aspects: heterogeneity of spermatogenic defects, meiotic chromosomal asynapsis, and embryonic lethality preferentially affecting females. In Ubr2-deficient germ cells, Tex19.1 is transcribed, but Tex19.1 protein is absent. Our results suggest that the binding of Ubr2 to Tex19.1 metabolically stabilizes Tex19.1 during spermatogenesis, revealing a new function for Ubr2 outside the conventional N-end rule pathway.

  13. A rare Robertsonian translocation rob(14;22) carrier with azoospermia, meiotic defects, and testicular sperm aneuploidy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sobotka, Vladimir; Vozdova, Miluse; Heracek, Jiri; Rubes, Jiri

    2015-01-01

    Male infertility is a serious problem in an increasing number of couples. We report an infertile man with non-obstructive azoospermia and karyotype 45,XY,rob(14;22). The immunofluorescence analysis of his testicular tissue using antibodies to SYCP1, SYCP3, HORMAD2, MLH1, and centromeres showed delayed synapsis of the chromosomes involved in the translocation, a varying extent of trivalent asynapsis and its association with sex chromosomes. The mean frequency of meiotic recombination per cell was within the range of normal values. Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with probes for chromosomes 14 and 22 revealed 5.83% of chromosomally abnormal testicular spermatozoa. FISH with probes for chromosomes X, Y, and 21 showed frequencies of disomic and diploid testicular spermatozoa increased when compared to ejaculated sperm of healthy donors, but comparable with published results for azoospermic patients. PGD by FISH for the translocation and aneuploidy of chromosomes X, Y, 13, 18, and 21 showed a normal chromosomal complement in one out of three analyzed embryos. A healthy carrier girl was born after the embryo transfer. This study shows the benefits of preimplantation genetic diagnosis in a case of a rare Robertsonian translocation carrier with azoospermia and a relatively low frequency of chromosomally unbalanced testicular spermatozoa.

  14. Meiotic recombination, synapsis, meiotic inactivation and sperm aneuploidy in a chromosome 1 inversion carrier.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirkpatrick, Gordon; Chow, Victor; Ma, Sai

    2012-01-01

    Disrupted meiotic behaviour of inversion carriers may be responsible for suboptimal sperm parameters in these carriers. This study investigated meiotic recombination, synapsis, transcriptional silencing and chromosome segregation effects in a pericentric inv(1) carrier. Recombination (MLH1), synapsis (SYCP1, SYCP3) and transcriptional inactivation (γH2AX, BRCA1) were examined by fluorescence immunostaining. Chromosome specific rates of recombination were determined by fluorescence in-situ hybridization. Furthermore, testicular sperm was examined for aneuploidy and segregation of the inv(1). Our findings showed that global recombination rates were similar to controls. Recombination on the inv(1) and the sex chromosomes were reduced. The inv(1) associated with the XY body in 43.4% of cells, in which XY recombination was disproportionately absent, and 94.3% of cells displayed asynapsed regions which displayed meiotic silencing regardless of their association with the XY body. Furthermore, a low frequency of chromosomal imbalance was observed in spermatozoa (3.4%). Our results suggest that certain inversion carriers may display unimpaired global recombination and impaired recombination on the involved and the sex chromosomes during meiosis. Asynapsis or inversion-loop formation in the inverted region may be responsible for impaired spermatogenesis and may prevent sperm-chromosome imbalance.

  15. Nondisjunction of chromosome 15: Origin and recombination

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Robinson, W.P.; Bernasconi, F.; Schinzel, A.A.; Mutirangura, A.; Ledbetter, D.H. (Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX (United States)); Langlois, S. (Univ. of Britisch Columbia, Vancouver (Canada)); Morris, M.A.; Malcolm, S.

    1993-09-01

    Thirty-two cases of uniparental disomy (UPD), ascertained from Prader-Willi syndrome patients (N=27) and Angelman syndrome patients (N-5), are used to investigate the pattern of recombination associated with nondisjunction of chromosome 15. In addition, the meiotic stage of nondisjunction is inferred by using markers mapping near the centromere. Two basic approaches to the analysis of recombination in specific pairwise intervals along the chromosome. This method shows a significant reduction in recombination for two of five intervals examined. Second, the observed frequency of each recombinant class (i.e., zero, one, two, three, or more observable crossovers) is compared with expected values. This is useful for testing whether the reduction in recombination can be attributed solely to a proportion of cases with no recombination at all (because of asynapsis), with the remaining groups showing normal recombination (or even excess recombination), or whether recombination is uniformly reduced. Analysis of maternal UPD(15) data shows a slight reduction in the multiple-recombinant classes, with a corresponding increase in both the zero- and one-recombinant classes over expected values. The majority, more than 82%, of the extra chromosomes in maternal UPD(15) cases are due to meiotic I nondisjunction events. In contrast, more paternal UPD(15) cases so far examined appear to have a postzygotic origin of the extra paternal chromosome. 33 refs., 1 fig., 7 tabs.

  16. Microsporogenesis in Paspalum conspersum Schrad. (Virgata group) with different ploidy levels.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janke, L; Souza, F H D; Valls, J F M; Pagliarini, M S

    2013-10-24

    Knowledge about the cytology and reproductive behavior of a species is indispensable for hybridization programs. This is especially true for species belonging to the genus Paspalum, among which apomixis and a wide range of ploidy levels are frequently found. Paspalum conspersum Schrad. is a robust and warm-season perennial bunchgrass native to South America. Previous studies have indicated that both tetraploid and hexaploid races exist in this species; however, only information related to tetraploids has been applied to another taxon. In this study, a cytological investigation in two Brazilian accessions collected in different regions revealed tetraploidy in the accession BRA-012823 (2n = 4x = 40), with chromosome pairing in bivalents and normal meiosis and tetrad formation, and pentaploidy (2n = 5x = 50) in the accession BRA-022748, which presented total asynapsis. In this latter accession, 50 univalents could be scored at diakinesis. After alignment at the metaphase plate, sister chromatids segregated to the poles. Only one meiotic division (equational) occurred, and after cytokinesis, 100% of the dyads that formed had 2n microspores. The meiotic behavior during microsporogenesis, which showed 10 delayed univalents to reach the metaphase plate, suggests that this accession is a recent natural hybrid constituted by a parental genome with 40 chromosomes and another with 10 chromosomes. The potential usage of these accessions in Paspalum breeding has been discussed.

  17. [Homologue pairing: initiation sites and effects on crossing over and chromosome disjunction in Drosophila melanogaster].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chubykin, V L

    1996-01-01

    The role of homologue pairing and chromocentral association of chromosomes in recombination and segregation during cell division is discussed. Peculiarities of mitotic and meiotic chromosome pairing in Drosophila males and females are considered. On the basis of our own and published data, the presence and localization of sites of homologue pairing initiation in euchromatin are substantiated. The effects of transfer of initiation sites along a chromosome (exemplified by inversions) on chromosome pairing (asynapsis), crossing over (intrachromosomal, interchromosomal, and centromeric effects), and segregation are discussed. To record the effects of pairing sites on crossing over, a method of comparing crossing-over frequencies in an inverted region with those in a region of the same size and position with regard to the centromere on cytological maps was proposed. Chromosomes orient toward opposite division poles during paracentromeric heterochromatin pairing. This occurs after successful euchromatin pairing, during which the chromocentral circular structure is reorganized. If heterochromatin pairing is disrupted because of structural or locus mutations, nonexchange bivalents segregate randomly. In this case, chromosome coordination may occur due to proximal chiasmata or chromocentral associations between homologues.

  18. The Drosophila bipectinata species complex: phylogenetic relationship among different members based on chromosomal variations

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    PARUL BANERJEE; BASHISTH N. SINGH

    2017-03-01

    Making interspecific hybridizations, where possible remains an unparalleled option for studying the intricacies of speciation. In the Drosophila bipectinata species complex comprising of four species, namely D. bipectinata, D. parabipectinata, D. malerkotliana and D. pseudoananassae, interspecific hybrids can be obtained in the laboratory, thus bequeathing an ideal opportunity for studying speciation and phylogeny. With the view of investigating the degree of divergence between each species pair, we planned to study the polytene chromosomes of the F1 hybrids, as it would mirror the level of compatibility between the genomes of the parental species. Two sets of crosses were made, one involving homozygous strains of all four species from India and the other including homozygous strains from different places across the globe. Polytene chromosomes of F1 larvae from both sets of crosses had similar configurations. In F1 larvae from crosses involving D. bipectinata, D. parabipectinata and D. malerkotliana, complex configurations (depicting overlapping inversions) could be detected in different arms. However, they were fairly synapsed, indicating that the differences are only at the level of gene arrangements. The polytene chromosomes of larvae obtained by crossing D. pseudoananassae with the other three species were very thin with gross asynapsis in all the arms, demonstrating that the genome of D. pseudoananassae is widely diverged from rest of the species. The overlapping inversions (reflected in complex configuration), are inferred in the light of earlier chromosomal studies performed in this complex.

  19. SPO11-independent DNA repair foci and their role in meiotic silencing.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabrizia Carofiglio

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available In mammalian meiotic prophase, the initial steps in repair of SPO11-induced DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs are required to obtain stable homologous chromosome pairing and synapsis. The X and Y chromosomes pair and synapse only in the short pseudo-autosomal regions. The rest of the chromatin of the sex chromosomes remain unsynapsed, contains persistent meiotic DSBs, and the whole so-called XY body undergoes meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI. A more general mechanism, named meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin (MSUC, is activated when autosomes fail to synapse. In the absence of SPO11, many chromosomal regions remain unsynapsed, but MSUC takes place only on part of the unsynapsed chromatin. We asked if spontaneous DSBs occur in meiocytes that lack a functional SPO11 protein, and if these might be involved in targeting the MSUC response to part of the unsynapsed chromatin. We generated mice carrying a point mutation that disrupts the predicted catalytic site of SPO11 (Spo11(YF/YF, and blocks its DSB-inducing activity. Interestingly, we observed foci of proteins involved in the processing of DNA damage, such as RAD51, DMC1, and RPA, both in Spo11(YF/YF and Spo11 knockout meiocytes. These foci preferentially localized to the areas that undergo MSUC and form the so-called pseudo XY body. In SPO11-deficient oocytes, the number of repair foci increased during oocyte development, indicating the induction of S phase-independent, de novo DNA damage. In wild type pachytene oocytes we observed meiotic silencing in two types of pseudo XY bodies, one type containing DMC1 and RAD51 foci on unsynapsed axes, and another type containing only RAD51 foci, mainly on synapsed axes. Taken together, our results indicate that in addition to asynapsis, persistent SPO11-induced DSBs are important for the initiation of MSCI and MSUC, and that SPO11-independent DNA repair foci contribute to the MSUC response in oocytes.

  20. SPO11-independent DNA repair foci and their role in meiotic silencing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carofiglio, Fabrizia; Inagaki, Akiko; de Vries, Sandra; Wassenaar, Evelyne; Schoenmakers, Sam; Vermeulen, Christie; van Cappellen, Wiggert A; Sleddens-Linkels, Esther; Grootegoed, J Anton; Te Riele, Hein P J; de Massy, Bernard; Baarends, Willy M

    2013-06-01

    In mammalian meiotic prophase, the initial steps in repair of SPO11-induced DNA double-strand breaks (DSBs) are required to obtain stable homologous chromosome pairing and synapsis. The X and Y chromosomes pair and synapse only in the short pseudo-autosomal regions. The rest of the chromatin of the sex chromosomes remain unsynapsed, contains persistent meiotic DSBs, and the whole so-called XY body undergoes meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI). A more general mechanism, named meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin (MSUC), is activated when autosomes fail to synapse. In the absence of SPO11, many chromosomal regions remain unsynapsed, but MSUC takes place only on part of the unsynapsed chromatin. We asked if spontaneous DSBs occur in meiocytes that lack a functional SPO11 protein, and if these might be involved in targeting the MSUC response to part of the unsynapsed chromatin. We generated mice carrying a point mutation that disrupts the predicted catalytic site of SPO11 (Spo11(YF/YF)), and blocks its DSB-inducing activity. Interestingly, we observed foci of proteins involved in the processing of DNA damage, such as RAD51, DMC1, and RPA, both in Spo11(YF/YF) and Spo11 knockout meiocytes. These foci preferentially localized to the areas that undergo MSUC and form the so-called pseudo XY body. In SPO11-deficient oocytes, the number of repair foci increased during oocyte development, indicating the induction of S phase-independent, de novo DNA damage. In wild type pachytene oocytes we observed meiotic silencing in two types of pseudo XY bodies, one type containing DMC1 and RAD51 foci on unsynapsed axes, and another type containing only RAD51 foci, mainly on synapsed axes. Taken together, our results indicate that in addition to asynapsis, persistent SPO11-induced DSBs are important for the initiation of MSCI and MSUC, and that SPO11-independent DNA repair foci contribute to the MSUC response in oocytes.

  1. The composite regulatory basis of the large X-effect in mouse speciation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larson, Erica L; Keeble, Sara; Vanderpool, Dan; Dean, Matthew D; Good, Jeffrey M

    2016-12-20

    The disruption of meiotic sex chromosome inactivation (MSCI) has been proposed to be a major developmental mechanism underlying the rapid evolution of hybrid male sterility. We tested this idea by analyzing cell-specific gene expression across spermatogenesis in two lineages of house mice and their sterile and fertile reciprocal hybrids. We found pervasive disruption of sex chromosome gene expression in sterile hybrids at every stage of spermatogenesis. Failure of MSCI was developmentally preceded by increased silencing of autosomal genes, supporting the hypothesis that divergence at the hybrid incompatibility gene, Prdm9, results in increased rates of autosomal asynapsis which in turn triggers widespread silencing of unsynapsed chromatin. We also detected opposite patterns of postmeiotic overexpression or hyper-repression of the sex chromosomes in reciprocal hybrids, supporting the hypothesis that genomic conflict has driven functional divergence that leads to deleterious X-Y dosage imbalances in hybrids. Our developmental timeline also exposed more subtle patterns of mitotic misregulation on the X chromosome, a previously undocumented stage of spermatogenic disruption in this cross. These results indicate that multiple hybrid incompatibilities have converged on a common regulatory phenotype, the disrupted expression of the sex chromosomes during spermatogenesis. Collectively, these data reveal a composite regulatory basis to hybrid male sterility in mice that helps resolve the mechanistic underpinnings of the well-documented large X-effect in mice speciation. We propose that the inherent sensitivity of spermatogenesis to X-linked regulatory disruption has the potential to be a major driver of reproductive isolation in species with chromosomal sex determination.

  2. A High Incidence of Meiotic Silencing of Unsynapsed Chromatin Is Not Associated with Substantial Pachytene Loss in Heterozygous Male Mice Carrying Multiple Simple Robertsonian Translocations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasco, Chiara; Berríos, Soledad; Parra, María Teresa; Viera, Alberto; Rufas, Julio S.; Zuccotti, Maurizio; Garagna, Silvia; Fernández-Donoso, Raúl

    2009-01-01

    Meiosis is a complex type of cell division that involves homologous chromosome pairing, synapsis, recombination, and segregation. When any of these processes is altered, cellular checkpoints arrest meiosis progression and induce cell elimination. Meiotic impairment is particularly frequent in organisms bearing chromosomal translocations. When chromosomal translocations appear in heterozygosis, the chromosomes involved may not correctly complete synapsis, recombination, and/or segregation, thus promoting the activation of checkpoints that lead to the death of the meiocytes. In mammals and other organisms, the unsynapsed chromosomal regions are subject to a process called meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin (MSUC). Different degrees of asynapsis could contribute to disturb the normal loading of MSUC proteins, interfering with autosome and sex chromosome gene expression and triggering a massive pachytene cell death. We report that in mice that are heterozygous for eight multiple simple Robertsonian translocations, most pachytene spermatocytes bear trivalents with unsynapsed regions that incorporate, in a stage-dependent manner, proteins involved in MSUC (e.g., γH2AX, ATR, ubiquitinated-H2A, SUMO-1, and XMR). These spermatocytes have a correct MSUC response and are not eliminated during pachytene and most of them proceed into diplotene. However, we found a high incidence of apoptotic spermatocytes at the metaphase stage. These results suggest that in Robertsonian heterozygous mice synapsis defects on most pachytene cells do not trigger a prophase-I checkpoint. Instead, meiotic impairment seems to mainly rely on the action of a checkpoint acting at the metaphase stage. We propose that a low stringency of the pachytene checkpoint could help to increase the chances that spermatocytes with synaptic defects will complete meiotic divisions and differentiate into viable gametes. This scenario, despite a reduction of fertility, allows the spreading of Robertsonian

  3. Genetic adaptation associated with genome-doubling in autotetraploid Arabidopsis arenosa.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jesse D Hollister

    Full Text Available Genome duplication, which results in polyploidy, is disruptive to fundamental biological processes. Genome duplications occur spontaneously in a range of taxa and problems such as sterility, aneuploidy, and gene expression aberrations are common in newly formed polyploids. In mammals, genome duplication is associated with cancer and spontaneous abortion of embryos. Nevertheless, stable polyploid species occur in both plants and animals. Understanding how natural selection enabled these species to overcome early challenges can provide important insights into the mechanisms by which core cellular functions can adapt to perturbations of the genomic environment. Arabidopsis arenosa includes stable tetraploid populations and is related to well-characterized diploids A. lyrata and A. thaliana. It thus provides a rare opportunity to leverage genomic tools to investigate the genetic basis of polyploid stabilization. We sequenced the genomes of twelve A. arenosa individuals and found signatures suggestive of recent and ongoing selective sweeps throughout the genome. Many of these are at genes implicated in genome maintenance functions, including chromosome cohesion and segregation, DNA repair, homologous recombination, transcriptional regulation, and chromatin structure. Numerous encoded proteins are predicted to interact with one another. For a critical meiosis gene, ASYNAPSIS1, we identified a non-synonymous mutation that is highly differentiated by cytotype, but present as a rare variant in diploid A. arenosa, indicating selection may have acted on standing variation already present in the diploid. Several genes we identified that are implicated in sister chromatid cohesion and segregation are homologous to genes identified in a yeast mutant screen as necessary for survival of polyploid cells, and also implicated in genome instability in human diseases including cancer. This points to commonalities across kingdoms and supports the hypothesis that

  4. Genetic adaptation associated with genome-doubling in autotetraploid Arabidopsis arenosa.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hollister, Jesse D; Arnold, Brian J; Svedin, Elisabeth; Xue, Katherine S; Dilkes, Brian P; Bomblies, Kirsten

    2012-01-01

    Genome duplication, which results in polyploidy, is disruptive to fundamental biological processes. Genome duplications occur spontaneously in a range of taxa and problems such as sterility, aneuploidy, and gene expression aberrations are common in newly formed polyploids. In mammals, genome duplication is associated with cancer and spontaneous abortion of embryos. Nevertheless, stable polyploid species occur in both plants and animals. Understanding how natural selection enabled these species to overcome early challenges can provide important insights into the mechanisms by which core cellular functions can adapt to perturbations of the genomic environment. Arabidopsis arenosa includes stable tetraploid populations and is related to well-characterized diploids A. lyrata and A. thaliana. It thus provides a rare opportunity to leverage genomic tools to investigate the genetic basis of polyploid stabilization. We sequenced the genomes of twelve A. arenosa individuals and found signatures suggestive of recent and ongoing selective sweeps throughout the genome. Many of these are at genes implicated in genome maintenance functions, including chromosome cohesion and segregation, DNA repair, homologous recombination, transcriptional regulation, and chromatin structure. Numerous encoded proteins are predicted to interact with one another. For a critical meiosis gene, ASYNAPSIS1, we identified a non-synonymous mutation that is highly differentiated by cytotype, but present as a rare variant in diploid A. arenosa, indicating selection may have acted on standing variation already present in the diploid. Several genes we identified that are implicated in sister chromatid cohesion and segregation are homologous to genes identified in a yeast mutant screen as necessary for survival of polyploid cells, and also implicated in genome instability in human diseases including cancer. This points to commonalities across kingdoms and supports the hypothesis that selection has acted on

  5. Fluorescent in situ hybridization analyses of human oocytes in trisomy 18 and 21

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Cheng, E.Y.; Chen, Y.J.; Gartler, S.M. [Univ. of Washington School of Medicine, Seattle, WA (United States)

    1994-09-01

    The commonly accepted view of synapsis is that only 2 homologues can synapse at any one site and that this restriction applies to polyploids as well. However, triple synapsis has been observed is some triploid plants and in triploid chicken. In humans, triple synapsis of the long arm of chromosome 21 was detected in sperm of a trisomic 21 individual. More recently, studies of oocytes from trisomic 21 and 18 fetuses also indicated extensive triple synapsis along the entire length of the chromosomes. To further investigate this question, we undertook an evaluation of trivalent synapsis in fetal oocytes from 2 trisomic 21 and 2 trisomic 18 fetuses using fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH) with whole chromosome probes. Oocytes were hybridized with whole chromosome probes obtained from ONCOR, Inc. after fixation with methanol and acetic acid. Slides were scored for the distribution of prophase stages, hybridization efficiency, and hybridization characteristics of chromosomes 18 and 21 in the trisomic 18 and 21 fetuses respectively. Fifty-eight per cent (379/650) of pachytenes analyzed for chromosome 18 contained a conspicous trivalent and 319 (48%) of these nuclei contained a single, thick, continuous fluorescent signal consistent with complete triple synapsis along the entire length of all 3 chromosomes. Sixteen per cent (104/650) of pachytene contained 2 signals consistent with a bivalent and a univalent, and 9 cells contained 3 thin signals consistent with asynapsis of all 3 chromosomes. The remaining 158 pachytenes had unusual pairing configurations that we could not classify, but they most likely represent trivalents with partial pairing between different homologues. In the 2 trisomic 21 fetuses, the majority (143/232) of pachytenes also contained one signal while only 52 cells contained a bivalent and univalent. Five cells contained 3 separate signals. These results confirm the existence of triple synapsis in human meiosis.

  6. A high incidence of meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin is not associated with substantial pachytene loss in heterozygous male mice carrying multiple simple robertsonian translocations.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcia Manterola

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Meiosis is a complex type of cell division that involves homologous chromosome pairing, synapsis, recombination, and segregation. When any of these processes is altered, cellular checkpoints arrest meiosis progression and induce cell elimination. Meiotic impairment is particularly frequent in organisms bearing chromosomal translocations. When chromosomal translocations appear in heterozygosis, the chromosomes involved may not correctly complete synapsis, recombination, and/or segregation, thus promoting the activation of checkpoints that lead to the death of the meiocytes. In mammals and other organisms, the unsynapsed chromosomal regions are subject to a process called meiotic silencing of unsynapsed chromatin (MSUC. Different degrees of asynapsis could contribute to disturb the normal loading of MSUC proteins, interfering with autosome and sex chromosome gene expression and triggering a massive pachytene cell death. We report that in mice that are heterozygous for eight multiple simple Robertsonian translocations, most pachytene spermatocytes bear trivalents with unsynapsed regions that incorporate, in a stage-dependent manner, proteins involved in MSUC (e.g., gammaH2AX, ATR, ubiquitinated-H2A, SUMO-1, and XMR. These spermatocytes have a correct MSUC response and are not eliminated during pachytene and most of them proceed into diplotene. However, we found a high incidence of apoptotic spermatocytes at the metaphase stage. These results suggest that in Robertsonian heterozygous mice synapsis defects on most pachytene cells do not trigger a prophase-I checkpoint. Instead, meiotic impairment seems to mainly rely on the action of a checkpoint acting at the metaphase stage. We propose that a low stringency of the pachytene checkpoint could help to increase the chances that spermatocytes with synaptic defects will complete meiotic divisions and differentiate into viable gametes. This scenario, despite a reduction of fertility, allows the spreading

  7. Exposure to low-dose bisphenol A impairs meiosis in the rat seminiferous tubule culture model: a physiotoxicogenomic approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sazan Ali

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Bisphenol A (BPA is one of the most widespread chemicals in the world and is suspected of being responsible for male reproductive impairments. Nevertheless, its molecular mode of action on spermatogenesis is unclear. This work combines physiology and toxicogenomics to identify mechanisms by which BPA affects the timing of meiosis and induces germ-cell abnormalities. METHODS: We used a rat seminiferous tubule culture model mimicking the in vivo adult rat situation. BPA (1 nM and 10 nM was added to the culture medium. Transcriptomic and meiotic studies were performed on the same cultures at the same exposure times (days 8, 14, and 21. Transcriptomics was performed using pangenomic rat microarrays. Immunocytochemistry was conducted with an anti-SCP3 antibody. RESULTS: The gene expression analysis showed that the total number of differentially expressed transcripts was time but not dose dependent. We focused on 120 genes directly involved in the first meiotic prophase, sustaining immunocytochemistry. Sixty-two genes were directly involved in pairing and recombination, some of them with high fold changes. Immunocytochemistry indicated alteration of meiotic progression in the presence of BPA, with increased leptotene and decreased diplotene spermatocyte percentages and partial meiotic arrest at the pachytene checkpoint. Morphological abnormalities were observed at all stages of the meiotic prophase. The prevalent abnormalities were total asynapsis and apoptosis. Transcriptomic analysis sustained immunocytological observations. CONCLUSION: We showed that low doses of BPA alter numerous genes expression, especially those involved in the reproductive system, and severely impair crucial events of the meiotic prophase leading to partial arrest of meiosis in rat seminiferous tubule cultures.

  8. Involvement of transcriptional enhancers in the regulation of developmental expression of yellow gene

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    CHEN; Jilong

    2001-01-01

    [1]Geyer, P. K., Green, M. M., Corces, V. G., Tissue-specific transcriptional enhancers may act on the gene located in the homologous chromosome, EMBO J., 1990, 9(7): 2247.[2]Chen, J. L., Liu, J., Chen, Z. W. et al., Molecular analysis of gene transvection by using Drosophila yellow gene model, Devel. Reprod. Biol., 1998, 7(2): 43.[3]Goldsborough, A. S., Kornberg, T. B., Reduction of transcription by homologue asynapsis in Drosophila imaginal discs, Nature, 1996, 381: 807.[4]Wu, C.- T., Morris, J. R., Transvection and other homology effects, Current Opinion in Genetics & Development, 1999, 9: 237.[5]Pal-Bhadra, M., Bhadra, U., Birchler, J. A., Cosuppression in Drosophila: gene silencing of alcohol dehydrogenase by white-Adh transgenes is polycomb dependent, Cell, 1997, 90: 479.[6]Matzke, M. A., Matzke, A. J. M., Homology-dependent gene silencing in transgenic plants: what does it really tell us? Trends Genet., 1995, 11: 1..[7]Aramayo, R., Metzenberg, R. L., Meiotic transvection in fungi, Cell, 1996, 86: 103.[8]Leiserson, W. M., Bonini, N. M., Benzer, S., Transvection at the eyes absent gene of Drosophila, Genetics, 1994, 138: 1171.[9]Sun, F. L., Dean, W. L., Kelsey, G. et al., Transactivation of Igf2 in a mouse model of Beckwith-Wiedemann Syndrome, Nature, 1997, 389: 809.[10] Morris, J. R., Chen, J. L., Geyer, P. K. et al., Two modes of transvection: enhancer action in trans and by pass of a chromatin insulator in cis, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, 1998, 95: 10740.[11] Morris, J. R., Chen, J. L., Filandrinos, S. T. et al., An analysis of transvection at the yellow locus of Drosophila melanogaster, Genetics, 1999, 151: 633.[12] Chen, J. L., Longo, F. J., Expression and localization of DNA topo II during spermatogenesis, Mol. Reprod. Devel., 1996, 45: 61.[13] Rubin, G. M., Spradling, A. C., Genetic transformation of Drosophila with transposable element vectors, Science, 1982, 218: 348.[14] Johnson

  9. Meiosis and the Neo-XY system of Dichroplus vittatus (Melanoplinae, Acrididae): a comparison between sexes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bidau, C J; Marti, D A

    2000-01-01

    The origin of neo-XY sex systems in Acrididae is usually explained through an X-autosome centric fusion, and the behaviour of the neo-sex chromosomes has been solely studied in males. In this paper we analysed male and female Dichroplus vittatus. The karyotype comprises 2n = 20 chromosomes including 9 pairs of autosomes and a sex chromosome pair that includes a large metacentric neo-X and a small telocentric neo-Y. We compared the meiotic behaviour of the sex bivalent between both sexes. Mean cell autosomal chiasma frequency was low in both sexes and slightly but significantly higher in males than in females. Chiasma frequency of females increased significantly when the sex-bivalent was included. Chiasma distribution was basically distal in both sexes. Behaviour of the neo-XY pair is complex as a priori suggested by its structure, which was analysed in mitosis and meiosis of diploid and polyploid cells. During meiosis, orientation of the neo-XY is highly irregular; only 21% of the metaphase I spermatocytes show standard orientation. In the rest of cells, the alternate or simultaneous activity of an extra kinetochore in the distal end of the short arm (XL) of the neo-X, determined unusual MI orientations and a high frequency of non-disjunction and lagging of the sex-chromosomes. In females, the neo-XX bivalent had a more regular behaviour but showed 17% asynapsis in the XL arm which, in those cases orientated its distal ends towards opposite spindle poles suggesting, again, the activity of a second kinetochore. The dicentric nature and the unstable meiotic behaviour of the sex neo-chromosomes of D. vittatus suggest a recent origin of the sex determination mechanism, with presumable adaptive advantages which could compensate their potential negative heterosis. Our observations suggest that the origin of the neo-sex system was a tandem fusion of two original telocentric X-chromosomes followed by another tandem fusion with the small megameric bivalent and a further

  10. Robertsonian chromosome polymorphism of Akodon molinae (Rodentia: Sigmodontinae: analysis of trivalents in meiotic prophase Polimorfismo cromosómico Robertsoniano de Akodon molinae (Rodentia: Sigmodontinae

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    RAÚL FERNÁNDEZ-DONOSO

    2001-03-01

    Full Text Available Akodon molinae (with 2n = 42-43-44 and an FN = 44 shows a remarkable polymorphism of chromosome 1 in natural and laboratory populations. Specimens 2n = 42, named single homozygotes (SH, have a chromosome pair 1 formed by two large metacentric chromosomes. Specimens 2n = 3, heterozygotes (Ht, have one chromosome 1 and two medium-sized subtelocentric chromosomes, 1a and 1b, which are homologous with the long and short arms of chromosome 1 respectively. Specimens 2n = 44 are double homozygotes (DH, with just two pairs of medium-sized subtelocentric chromosomes, 1a and 1b. Analysis of meiotic metaphases I and II showed that anomalous segregation occurs more frequently in spermatocytes carrying the 1a and 1b chromosomes. This would disturb gametogenesis and other reproductive and developmental processes, producing a marked decrease in viability of DH individuals. There is, as yet, no satisfactory explanation for these phenomena. To investigate structural elements which might explain such segregational anomalies, we have studied bivalent and trivalent synapsis in pachytene spermatocytes from SH, Ht and DH specimens. Of a total of 80 spermatocyte nuclei microspreads, the following results were obtained: of 16 microspreads from two SH individuals, 20 autosomic bivalents plus the XY bivalent were observed; of 48 microspreads from three Ht individuals, 19 autosomic bivalents, 1 trivalent and an XY bivalent were seen; and of the 16 microspreads from two DH individuals, 21 autosomic bivalents plus the XY bivalent were found. Trivalents analysed showed complete pairing between the short arms of 1a and 1b, and having an apparently normal synaptonemal complex (SC with lengths of 1 and 2.8 µm. The trivalent SC showed three telomeric ends, corresponding to arms: q1 and q1a; p1 and q1b; and p1a and p1b, with attachment plates to the nuclear envelope of normal organisation. None of the trivalents showed asynapsis or desynapsis between p1a and p1b, nor an