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Plant J. 1997 Jul;12(1):31-7.

Physical mapping of the 5S ribosomal RNA genes in Arabidopsis thaliana by multi-color fluorescence in situ hybridization with cosmid clones.

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Research Institute for Bioresources, Okayama University, Kurashiki, Japan.


The 5S ribosomal RNA genes were mapped to mitotic chromosomes of Arabidopsis thaliana by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). In the ecotype Landsberg erecta, hybridization signals appeared on three pairs of chromosomes, two of which were metacentric and the other acrocentric. Hybridization signals on one pair of metacentric chromosomes were much stronger than those on the acrocentric and the other pair of metacentric chromosomes, probably reflecting the number of copies of the genes on the chromosomes. Other ecotypes, Columbia and Wassilewskija, had similar chromosomal distribution of the genes, but the hybridization signals on one pair of metacentric chromosomes were very weak, and detectable only in chromosomes prepared from young flower buds. The chromosomes and arms carrying the 5S rDNA were identified by multi-color FISH with cosmid clones and a centromeric 180 bp repeat as co-probes. The metacentric chromosome 5 and its L arm carries the largest cluster of the genes, and the short arm of acrocentric chromosome 4 carries a small cluster in all three ecotypes. Chromosome 3 had another small cluster of 5S rRNA genes on its L arm. Chromosome 1 and 2 had no 5S rDNA cluster, but they are morphologically distinguishable; chromosome 1 is metacentric and 2 acrocentric. Using the 5S rDNA as a probe, therefore, all chromosomes of A. thaliana could be identified by FISH. Chromosome 1 is large and metacentric; chromosome 2 is acrocentric carrying 18S-5.8S-25S rDNA clusters on its short arm; chromosome 3 is metacentric carrying a small cluster of 5S rDNA genes on its L arm; chromosome 4 is acrocentric carrying both 18S-5.8S-25S and 5S rDNAs on its short (L) arm; and/chromosome 5 is metacentric carrying a large cluster of 5S rDNA on its L arm.

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