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Genetics. 2009 May;182(1):365-74. doi: 10.1534/genetics.108.098541. Epub 2009 Mar 18.

Linkage analysis reveals the independent origin of Poeciliid sex chromosomes and a case of atypical sex inheritance in the guppy (Poecilia reticulata).

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Max Plank Institute for Developmental Biology, 72076 Tübingen, Germany.


Among different teleost fish species, diverse sex-determining mechanisms exist, including environmental and genetic sex determination, yet chromosomal sex determination with male heterogamety (XY) prevails. Different pairs of autosomes have evolved as sex chromosomes among species in the same genus without evidence for a master sex-determining locus being identical. Models for evolution of Y chromosomes predict that male-advantageous genes become linked to a sex-determining locus and suppressed recombination ensures their co-inheritance. In the guppy, Poecilia reticulata, a set of genes responsible for adult male ornaments are linked to the sex-determining locus on the incipient Y chromosome. We have identified >60 sex-linked molecular markers to generate a detailed map for the sex linkage group of the guppy and compared it with the syntenic autosome 12 of medaka. We mapped the sex-determining locus to the distal end of the sex chromosome. We report a sex-biased distribution of recombination events in female and male meiosis on sex chromosomes. In one mapping cross, we observed sex ratio and male phenotype deviations and propose an atypical mode of genetic sex inheritance as its basis.

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