, Volume 113, Issue 1, pp 42–52 | Cite as

Diverse patterns of the tandem repeats organization in rye chromosomes

  • Olena G. Alkhimova
  • Nina A. Mazurok
  • Tatyana A. Potapova
  • Suren M. Zakian
  • John S. Heslop-Harrison
  • Alexander V. VershininEmail author
Research Article


Although the monomer size, nucleotide sequence, abundance and species distribution of tandemly organized DNA families are well characterized, little is known about the internal structure of tandem arrays, including total arrays size and the pattern of monomers distribution. Using our rye specific probes, pSc200 and pSc250, we addressed these issues for telomere associated rye heterochromatin where these families are very abundant. Fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) on meiotic chromosomes revealed a specific mosaic arrangement of domains for each chromosome arm where either pSc200 or pSc250 predominates without any obvious tendency in order and size of domains. DNA of rye-wheat monosomic additions studied by pulse field gel electrophoresis produced a unique overall blot hybridization display for each of the rye chromosomes. The FISH signals on DNA fibres showed multiple monomer arrangement patterns of both repetitive families as well as of the Arabidopsis-type telomere repeat. The majority of the arrays consisted of the monomers of both families in different patterns separated by spacers. The primary structure of some spacer sequences revealed scrambled regions of similarity to various known repetitive elements. This level of complexity in the long-range organization of tandem arrays has not been previously reported for any plant species. The various patterns of internal structure of the tandem arrays are likely to have resulted from evolutionary interplay, array homogenization and the generation of heterogeneity mediated by double-strand breaks and associated repair mechanisms.


Telomeric Repeat Identical Monomer Tandem Array Illegitimate Recombination Monosomic Addition 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We are grateful to Dr. J. Doležel (Institute of Experimental Botany, Olomouc, Czech Republic) for providing us with sorted rye chromosomes, Dr. N. Chuzhanova (Cardiff University, Cardiff, UK) for measuring the complexity profile, and Prof. T.H.N. Ellis (John Innes Centre, Norwich, UK) for many valuable comments on the manuscript. The Institute of Cytology and Genetics is supported by the Russian Academy of Science; the Institute of Molecular Biology and Genetics is supported by the Ukraine National Academy of Sciences. This work was also supported by an INTAS grant (03-51-5908) and grants from the Russian Foundation for Basic Research (00-04-48992, 04-04-48813) and the Royal Society.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Olena G. Alkhimova
    • 1
  • Nina A. Mazurok
    • 2
  • Tatyana A. Potapova
    • 2
  • Suren M. Zakian
    • 2
  • John S. Heslop-Harrison
    • 3
  • Alexander V. Vershinin
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.Institute of Molecular Biology and GeneticsKiev 03143Ukraine
  2. 2.Institute of Cytology and GeneticsNovosibirsk 630090Russia
  3. 3.Department of BiologyUniversity of LeicesterLeicesterUK

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