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Exp Aging Res. 2002 Oct-Dec;28(4):361-90.

The complex genetic architecture of Drosophila life span.

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Department of Genetics, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina, USA.


Continuous phenotypic variation in life span results from segregating genetic variation at multiple loci, the environmental sensitivity of expression of these loci, and the history of environmental variation experienced by the organism throughout its life. We have mapped quantitative trait loci (QTL) that produce variation in the life span of mated Drosophila melanogaster using a panel of recombinant inbred lines (RIL) that were backcrossed to the parental strains from which they were derived. Five QTL were identified that influence mated life span, three were male-specific, one was female-specific, and one affected life span in both sexes. The additive allelic effects and dominance of QTL were highly sex-specific. One pair of QTL also exhibited significant epistatic effects on life span. We summarize all of the QTL mapping data for Drosophila life span, and outline future prospects for disentangling the genetic and environmental influences on this trait.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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