Molecular and General Genetics MGG

, Volume 192, Issue 3, pp 452–458 | Cite as

X chromosome dosage and gene expression in Caenorhabditis elegans: Two unusual dumpy genes

  • J. Hodgkin


The phenotypes caused by mutations in two autosomal genes of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, dpy-21 V and dpy-26 IV, are markedly affected by X chromosome dosage, independent of sexual phenotype. At high X chromosome to autosome ratio, in 2A; 3X animals, these dumpy mutations are lethal; at intermediate ratio, in 2A; 2X animals, they cause dumpiness or lethality; at low ratio, in 2A; 1X animals they cause neither dumpiness nor lethality. One gene, dpy-26, exhibits a strong maternal effect. Interaction between these genes and two major sex-determining genes her-1 V and tra-1 III have been examined. The dumpy mutations partly suppress the masculinization of tra-1 2A;2X animals and also increase the fertility of most her-1 2A;1X hermaphrodites. It is suggested that these dumpy genes are involved in X chromosome dosage compensation, and in some aspects of sexual differentiation. The dpy-26 gene is compared with a similar Drosophila gene, daughterless.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Hodgkin
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Molecular BiologyMedical Research Council CentreCambridgeEngland

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