ResearchPad - z-chromosomes https://www.researchpad.co Default RSS Feed en-us © 2020 Newgen KnowledgeWorks <![CDATA[Corticosterone and testosterone treatment influence expression of gene pathways linked to meiotic segregation in preovulatory follicles of the domestic hen]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/elastic_article_14547 Decades of work indicate that female birds can control their offspring sex ratios in response to environmental and social cues. In laying hens, hormones administered immediately prior to sex chromosome segregation can exert sex ratio skews, indicating that these hormones may act directly on the germinal disc to influence which sex chromosome is retained in the oocyte and which is discarded into an unfertilizable polar body. We aimed to uncover the gene pathways involved in this process by testing whether treatments with testosterone or corticosterone that were previously shown to influence sex ratios elicit changes in the expression of genes and/or gene pathways involved in the process of meiotic segregation. We injected laying hens with testosterone, corticosterone, or control oil 5h prior to ovulation and collected germinal discs from the F1 preovulatory follicle in each hen 1.5h after injection. We used RNA-sequencing (RNA-seq) followed by DESeq2 and gene set enrichment analyses to identify genes and gene pathways that were differentially expressed between germinal discs of control and hormone-treated hens. Corticosterone treatment triggered downregulation of 13 individual genes, as well as enrichment of gene sets related to meiotic spindle organization and chromosome segregation, and additional gene sets that function in ion transport. Testosterone treatment triggered upregulation of one gene, and enrichment of one gene set that functions in nuclear chromosome segregation. This work indicates that corticosterone can be a potent regulator of meiotic processes and provides potential gene targets on which corticosterone and/or testosterone may act to influence offspring sex ratios in birds.

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<![CDATA[Recombination rate variation shapes barriers to introgression across butterfly genomes]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5c65dcb6d5eed0c484dec09f

Hybridisation and introgression can dramatically alter the relationships among groups of species, leading to phylogenetic discordance across the genome and between populations. Introgression can also erode species differences over time, but selection against introgression at certain loci acts to maintain postmating species barriers. Theory predicts that species barriers made up of many loci throughout the genome should lead to a broad correlation between introgression and recombination rate, which determines the extent to which selection on deleterious foreign alleles will affect neutral alleles at physically linked loci. Here, we describe the variation in genealogical relationships across the genome among three species of Heliconius butterflies: H. melpomene (mel), H. cydno (cyd), and H. timareta (tim), using whole genomes of 92 individuals, and ask whether this variation can be explained by heterogeneous barriers to introgression. We find that species relationships vary predictably at the chromosomal scale. By quantifying recombination rate and admixture proportions, we then show that rates of introgression are predicted by variation in recombination rate. This implies that species barriers are highly polygenic, with selection acting against introgressed alleles across most of the genome. In addition, long chromosomes, which have lower recombination rates, produce stronger barriers on average than short chromosomes. Finally, we find a consistent difference between two species pairs on either side of the Andes, which suggests differences in the architecture of the species barriers. Our findings illustrate how the combined effects of hybridisation, recombination, and natural selection, acting at multitudes of loci over long periods, can dramatically sculpt the phylogenetic relationships among species.

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<![CDATA[Sex Chromosomes and Karyotype of the (Nearly) Mythical Creature, the Gila Monster, Heloderma suspectum (Squamata: Helodermatidae)]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989daa7ab0ee8fa60ba7c98

A wide variety of sex determination systems exist among squamate reptiles. They can therefore serve as an important model for studies of evolutionary transitions among particular sex determination systems. However, we still have only a limited knowledge of sex determination in certain important lineages of squamates. In this respect, one of the most understudied groups is the family Helodermatidae (Anguimorpha) encompassing the only two venomous species of lizards which are potentially lethal to human beings. We uncovered homomorphic ZZ/ZW sex chromosomes in the Gila monster (Heloderma suspectum) with a highly heterochromatic W chromosome. The sex chromosomes are morphologically similar to the ZZ/ZW sex chromosomes of monitor lizards (Varanidae). If the sex chromosomes of helodermatids and varanids are homologous, female heterogamety may be ancestral for the whole Anguimorpha group. Moreover, we found that the karyotype of the Gila monster consists of 2n = 36 chromosomes (14 larger metacentric chromosomes and 22 acrocentric microchromosomes). 2n = 36 is the widely distributed chromosomal number among squamates. In his pioneering works representing the only previous cytogenetic examination of the family Helodermatidae, Matthey reported the karyotype as 2n = 38 and suggested a different chromosomal morphology for this species. We believe that this was probably erroneously. We also discovered a strong accumulation of telomeric sequences on several pairs of microchromosomes in the Gila monster, which is a trait documented relatively rarely in vertebrates. These new data fill an important gap in our understanding of the sex determination and karyotype evolution of squamates.

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<![CDATA[Genomic Organization of Repetitive DNA in Woodpeckers (Aves, Piciformes): Implications for Karyotype and ZW Sex Chromosome Differentiation]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da08ab0ee8fa60b76736

Birds are characterized by a low proportion of repetitive DNA in their genome when compared to other vertebrates. Among birds, species belonging to Piciformes order, such as woodpeckers, show a relatively higher amount of these sequences. The aim of this study was to analyze the distribution of different classes of repetitive DNA—including microsatellites, telomere sequences and 18S rDNA—in the karyotype of three Picidae species (Aves, Piciformes)—Colaptes melanochloros (2n = 84), Colaptes campestris (2n = 84) and Melanerpes candidus (2n = 64)–by means of fluorescence in situ hybridization. Clusters of 18S rDNA were found in one microchromosome pair in each of the three species, coinciding to a region of (CGG)10 sequence accumulation. Interstitial telomeric sequences were found in some macrochromosomes pairs, indicating possible regions of fusions, which can be related to variation of diploid number in the family. Only one, from the 11 different microsatellite sequences used, did not produce any signals. Both species of genus Colaptes showed a similar distribution of microsatellite sequences, with some difference when compared to M. candidus. Microsatellites were found preferentially in the centromeric and telomeric regions of micro and macrochromosomes. However, some sequences produced patterns of interstitial bands in the Z chromosome, which corresponds to the largest element of the karyotype in all three species. This was not observed in the W chromosome of Colaptes melanochloros, which is heterochromatic in most of its length, but was not hybridized by any of the sequences used. These results highlight the importance of microsatellite sequences in differentiation of sex chromosomes, and the accumulation of these sequences is probably responsible for the enlargement of the Z chromosome.

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<![CDATA[Unraveling the Sex Chromosome Heteromorphism of the Paradoxical Frog Pseudis tocantins]]> https://www.researchpad.co/article/5989da19ab0ee8fa60b7c3da

The paradoxical frog Pseudis tocantins is the only species in the Hylidae family with known heteromorphic Z and W sex chromosomes. The Z chromosome is metacentric and presents an interstitial nucleolar organizer region (NOR) on the long arm that is adjacent to a pericentromeric heterochromatic band. In contrast, the submetacentric W chromosome carries a pericentromeric NOR on the long arm, which is adjacent to a clearly evident heterochromatic band that is larger than the band found on the Z chromosome and justify the size difference observed between these chromosomes. Here, we provide evidence that the non-centromeric heterochromatic bands in Zq and Wq differ not only in size and location but also in composition, based on comparative genomic hybridization (CGH) and an analysis of the anuran PcP190 satellite DNA. The finding of PcP190 sequences in P. tocantins extends the presence of this satellite DNA, which was previously detected among Leptodactylidae and Hylodidae, suggesting that this family of repetitive DNA is even older than it was formerly considered. Seven groups of PcP190 sequences were recognized in the genome of P. tocantins. PcP190 probes mapped to the heterochromatic band in Wq, and a Southern blot analysis indicated the accumulation of PcP190 in the female genome of P. tocantins, which suggests the involvement of this satellite DNA in the evolution of the sex chromosomes of this species.

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