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Genetica. 1993;92(1):55-60.

Mitochondrial DNA polymorphism and feminizing sex factors dynamics in a natural population of Armadillidium vulgare (Crustacea, Isopoda).

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Université de Poitiers, Laboratoire de Biologie Animale, URA CNRS n. 1452, France.


Sex determination in Armadillidium vulgare may be under the control of two parasitic sex factors that reverse genetic males into functional neo-females. The first feminizing factor (F) is a Wolbachia and the other (f) is probably a sequence of the F bacterial DNA unstably integrated into the host genome. Both of these feminizing factors are mainly maternally transmitted. Here we investigate the mitochondrial DNA polymorphism of wild iso-female lineages harbouring either F or f. Among the four haplotypes present in the population, two were the f-harbouring lineages, while two were common to the F- and f-harbouring lineages. This result suggests that there has been an introgression of the f factor into lineages infected by F Wolbachia. Based on previous data, we propose two different ways to account for such introgression. Given the particular dynamics of feminizing factors (f-harbouring lineages increase in populations at the expense of F-harbouring lineages), such an introgression should prevent the replacement of F-linked mitochondrial types by f-linked mitochondrial types in wild populations.

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