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Genetics. 1972 Apr;70(4):537-48.

Mutants of the biological clock in Chlamydomonas reinhardi.


A genetic analysis of the biological clock in Chlamydomonas reinhardi has been initiated. Of six wild-type strains tested (3 mt(+) and 3 mt(-)), five had periods close to 24 hr whereas one had a 21-hr period. Mutants with altered clock period have been isolated. The periods of 3 of these variant strains are temperature compensated. Genetic crosses involving a long-period mutant suggest that a single gene confers the long-period character, and in general clock-period length seems to be a useful phenotypic measure of alterations in the clock due to genetic differences. One phase mutant was found but its behavior was variable and the phase of the rhythm, relative to a light-dark transition which initiates the rhythm, does not seem to be reliable as a parameter of clock differences. No markers have yet been mapped.

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