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Genetics. 1972 May;71(1):139-56.

The anatomy and function of a segment of the X chromosome of Drosophila melanogaster.


An average size chromomere of the polytene X chromosome of Drosophila melanogaster contains enough DNA in each haploid equivalent strand to code for 30 genes, each 1,000 nucleotides long. We have attempted to learn about the organization of chromosomes by asking how many functional units can be localized within a chromomere. This was done by 1) recovery of mutants representative of every cistron in the 3A2-3C2 region; 2) the characterization of the function of each mutant type and grouping by complementation tests; 3) the determination of the genetic and cytological position of each cistron by recombination and deletion mapping. The data clearly show one functional group per chromomere. It is postulated that a chromomere is one cistron within which much of the DNA is regulatory in function.

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