Two temperature-sensitive sex-linkedgrandchildless (gs)-like mutations (gs(1)N26 andgs(1)N441) were induced by ethylmethane sulphonate inDrosophila melanogaster. They complemented each other and mapped at two different loci (1−33.8±0.7 forgs(1)N26 and 1−39.6±1.7 forgs(1)N441), which were not identical to those of any of thegs-like mutants reported in earlier work.
Homozygous females of the newly isolated mutants produced eggs that were unable to form pole cells and developed into agametic adults. Competence of the embryos to form pole cells was not restored by wild-type sperm in either mutant; that is, the sterility caused by these mutations is controlled by a maternal effect.
Fecundity and fertility ofgs(1)N26 females were low, and their male offspring showed a higher mortality than that of female offspring, causing an abnormal sex ratio. The frequency of agametic progeny was 93.1% and 55.8%, when the female parents were reared at 25° C and 18° C, respectively. In eggs produced by thegs(1)N26 females reared at 25° C, the migration of nuclei to the posterior pole was abnormal, and almost no pole cell formation occurred in these egg. Furthermore, half of these eggs failed to cellularize at the posterior pole. When the females were reared at 18° C, almost all of the eggs underwent complete blastoderm formation, and in half of these blastoderm embryos normal pole cells were formed.
In the other mutant,gs(1)N441, the fecundity and fertility of the females were normal. The agametic frequency in the progeny was 70.8% and 18.6% when the female parents were reared at 25° C and 18° C, respectively. In the eggs laid by females reared either at 25° C or at 18° C, the migration of nuclei to the periphery and cellularization proceeded normally; nevertheless, in the majority of the embryos no pole cell formation occured at the stage when nuclei penetrated into the periplasm. When the females were reared at 18° C, some of the embryos from these females formed some round blastoderm cells with cytologically recognizable polar granules and nuclear bodies, which are attributes of pole cells. The temperature sensitive period ofgs(1)N441 was estimated to extend from stage 9 to 13 of King's stages of oogenesis.