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Science. 2012 Jul 20;337(6092):341-5. doi: 10.1126/science.1225385.

Sex-specific adaptation drives early sex chromosome evolution in Drosophila.

Author information

1
Department of Integrative Biology, University of California Berkeley, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA.

Abstract

Most species' sex chromosomes are derived from ancient autosomes and show few signatures of their origins. We studied the sex chromosomes of Drosophila miranda, where a neo-Y chromosome originated only approximately 1 million years ago. Whole-genome and transcriptome analysis reveals massive degeneration of the neo-Y, that male-beneficial genes on the neo-Y are more likely to undergo accelerated protein evolution, and that neo-Y genes evolve biased expression toward male-specific tissues--the shrinking gene content of the neo-Y becomes masculinized. In contrast, although older X chromosomes show a paucity of genes expressed in male tissues, neo-X genes highly expressed in male-specific tissues undergo increased rates of protein evolution if haploid in males. Thus, the response to sex-specific selection can shift at different stages of X differentiation, resulting in masculinization or demasculinization of the X-chromosomal gene content.

PMID:
22822149
PMCID:
PMC4107656
DOI:
10.1126/science.1225385
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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