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Genetics. 1998 Jan;148(1):113-22.

Long, interrupted conversion tracts initiated by cog in Neurospora crassa.

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  • 1School of Biological Sciences, Flinders University, Adelaide, South Australia.


Multiple polymorphisms distinguish Emerson and Lindegren strains of Neurospora crassa within the histidine-3 gene and in its distal flank. Restriction site and sequence length polymorphism in a set of 14 PCR products covering this 6.9-kb region were used to identify the parental origin of DNA sequence information in prototrophic progeny of crosses heterozygous for auxotrophic mutations in his-3 and the silent sequence differences. Forty-one percent of conversion tracts are interrupted. Where the absence of rec-2+ permits activity of the recombination hotspot cog, conversion appears to originate at cog and conversion tracts are up to 5.9 kb long. The chromosome bearing cog(L), the dominant allele that confers a high frequency of recombination, is almost invariably the recipient of information. In progeny from crosses heterozygous rec-2/rec-2+, conversion tracts are much shorter, most are not initiated at cog and either chromosome seems equally likely to be converted. Although 32% of his-3 prototrophs have a crossover that may be associated with conversion, it is suggested that the apparent association between conversion and crossing over at this locus may be due to confounding of coincidental events rather than to a mechanistic relationship.

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