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Cell. 1988 Jul 15;54(2):179-89.

Association between a satellite DNA sequence and the Responder of Segregation Distorter in D. melanogaster.

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  • 1Department of Biology, University of Rochester, New York 14627.


A large array of satellite DNA sequences are always associated with the Responder (Rsp) element of Segregation Distorter in D. melanogaster. In the appropriate genetic backgrounds, Rsp causes aberrant chromatin condensation in spermiogenesis, leading to dysfunction of sperm carrying Rsp, and meiotic drive. The repeat array is deleted or translocated to the Y chromosome whenever Rsp is. Moreover, the translocation of part of Rsp to Y is associated with the translocation of an incomplete repeat array. The number of repeats among 35 independently derived chromosomes correlates nearly perfectly with sensitivity to distortion. We hypothesize that this satellite repeat array represents Responder itself. Finally, the molecular structure of this locus is extremely variable, indicating a very active process of change.

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