Format of Original
American Society for Microbiology
Molecular and Cellular Biology
Original Item ID
The development of the macronucleus from the zygotic micronucleus in the ciliated protozoan Tetrahymena spp. involves the elimination of specific DNA sequences (M. C. Yao and M. Gorovsky, Chromosoma 48:1-18 1974). The present study demonstrates that micronucleus-specific DNA is present on all five of the micronuclear chromosomes. Fragments of micronuclear DNA from Tetrahymena thermophila were cloned in the plasmid vector pBR322. A procedure was developed to examine the organization of the cloned sequences in micro- and macronuclear DNA without nick translating each individual probe. Twenty-three percent of randomly selected DNA sequences examined by this method were micronucleus (germ line) specific. They were all members of families of repeated sequences. Hybridization of six micronucleus-specific DNA sequences to micronuclear DNA from nullisomic strains of T. thermophila, which are lacking one or more pairs of chromosomes in the micronucleus, suggested that these sequences are present on several chromosomes. One micronucleus-specific sequence was shown by in situ hybridization to be present on all five of the micronuclear chromosomes.