Low diversity of t haplotypes in the eastern form of the house mouse, Mus musculus L.

A. Ruvinsky, A. Polyakov, A. Agulnik, H. Tichy, F. Figueroa, J. Klein

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In previous studies, 13 different recessive embryonic lethal genes have been associated with t haplotypes in the wild mice of the species Mus domesticus. In this communication we have analyzed five populations of Mus musculus for the presence and identity of t haplotypes. The populations occupy geographically distant regions in the Soviet Union: Altai Mountains, western and eastern Siberia, Azerbaijan and Turkmenistan. No t haplotypes were found in mice from eastern Siberia. In the remaining four populations, t haplotypes occurred with frequencies ranging from 0.07 to 0.21. All the t haplotypes extracted from these populations and analyzed by the genetic complementation test were shown to carry the same lethal gene tcl-w73. In one population (that of western Siberia), another lethal gene (tcl-w5) was found to be present on the same chromosome as tcl-w73. This situation is in striking contrast to that found in the populations of the western form of the house mouse, M. domesticus. In the latter species, tcl-w73 has not been found at all and the different populations are characterized by the presence of several different lethal genes. The low diversity of t haplotypes in M. musculus is consistent with lower genetic variability of other traits and indicates a different origin and speciation mode compared to M. domesticus. Serological typing for H-2 antigenic determinants suggests that most, if not all, of the newly described t haplotypes might have arisen by recombination of t(w73) from M. musculus with t haplotypes from M. domesticus either in the hybrid zone between the two species or in regions where the two species mixed accidentally.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-168
Number of pages8
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1991

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Genetics


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