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Inheritance of the group I rDNA intron in Tetrahymena pigmentosa

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We have previously argued from phylogenetic sequence data that the group I intron in the rRNA genes of Tetrahymena was acquired by different Tetrahymena species at different times during evolution. We have now approached the question of intron mobility experimentally by crossing intron+ and intron- strains looking for a strong polarity in the inheritance of the intron (intron homing). Based on the genetic analysis we find that the intron in T. pigmentosa is inherited as a neutral character and that intron+ and intron- alleles segregate in a Mendelian fashion with no sign of intron homing. In an analysis of vegetatively growing cells containing intron+ and intron- rDNA, initially in the same macronucleus, we similarly find no evidence of intron homing. During the course of this work, we observed to our surprise that progeny clones from some crosses contained three types of rDNA. One possible explanation is that T. pigmentosa has two rdn loci in contrast to the single locus found in T. thermophila. Some of the progeny clones from the genetic analysis were expanded for several hundred generations, and allelic assortment of the rDNA was demonstrated by subcloning analysis.
OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftGenesis: The Journal of Genetics and Development (Online)
Vol/bind13
Udgave nummer2
Sider (fra-til)133-142
Antal sider9
ISSN1526-968X
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 1992

ID: 310197