The unusual spectrum of mutations induced by hybrid dysgenesis at the Triplo-lethal locus of Drosophila malanogaster

D. R. Dorer, A. C. Christensen

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The Triplo-lethal locus (Tpl) is unique in its dosage sensitivity; no other locus in Drosophilia has been identified that is lethal when present in three doses. Tpl is also haplo-lethal, and its function is still a mystery. Previous workers have found it nearly impossible to mutationally inactivate Tpl other than by completely deleting the chromosomal region in which Tpl resides (83DE). We have utilized P-M hybrid dysgenesis in an effort to obtain new mutations of Tpl. We recovered 19 new duplications of Tpl, 15 hypomorphic mutations of Tpl (a previously rare class of mutation), and no null mutations. Surprisingly, 14 of the 15 hypomorphic alleles have no detectable P element sequences at the locus. The difficulty in recovering null mutations in Tpl suggests that it may be a complex locus, perhaps consisting of several genes with redundant functions. The relative ease with which we recovered hypomorphic alleles is in sharp contrast to previous attempts by others to mutagenize Tpl. A higher mutation rate with hybrid dysgenesis than with radiation or chemicals also suggests a peculiar genetic organization for the locus.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)795-801
Number of pages7
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Aug 10 1990


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics

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