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Chromosoma. 1988;96(3):255-61.

Cytogenetic and molecular aspects of position effect variegation in Drosophila melanogaster. II. Peculiarities of morphology and genetic activity of the 2B region in the T(1;2)dorvar7 chromosome in males.

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Department of Molecular Cytogenetics, Institute of Cytology and Genetics, Novosibirsk, USSR.


The peculiarities of compact blocks appearing as a consequence of position effect variegation were studied in male polytene chromosomes. In T(1;2)dorvar7/Y males the frequency of nuclei with a block in the 2B region was lower at all temperature and the chromosome region involved in compaction was shorter than in T(1;2)dorvar7/FM6 females. The fraction of nuclei with blocks was considerably increased in dorvar7/0 males, especially at 18 degrees C when the viability of these males is sharply reduced. The following features distinguish the blocks in males from those in females: (i) compaction of the 2B region in the males results in genetic inactivation only to a very small extent; (ii) the structure of the blocks in males is diffuse; and (iii) the male blocks still maintain some transcriptional activity as indicated by 3H-uridine incorporation. The temperature-sensitive period of both block formation and genetic inactivation was found to be during the first 3 h of embryonic development.

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