, Volume 120, Issue 3, pp 287–296 | Cite as

Dynamic gene order on the Silene latifolia Y chromosome

  • Elaine C. Howell
  • Susan J. Armstrong
  • Dmitry A. FilatovEmail author
Research Article


Dioecious Silene latifolia evolved heteromorphic sex chromosomes within the last ten million years, making it a species of choice for studies of the early stages of sex chromosome evolution in plants. About a dozen genes have been isolated from its sex chromosomes and basic genetic and deletion maps exist for the X and Y chromosomes. However, discrepancies between Y chromosome maps led to the proposal that individual Y chromosomes may differ in gene order. Here, we use an alternative approach, with fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH), to locate individual genes on S. latifolia sex chromosomes. We demonstrate that gene order on the Y chromosome differs between plants from two populations. We suggest that dynamic gene order may be a general property of Y chromosomes in species with XY systems, in view of recent work demonstrating that the gene order on the Y chromosomes of humans and chimpanzees are dramatically different.


Pericentric Inversion Chromosome Spread Mitotic Metaphase Hybridization Site Meiotic Metaphase 
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 C. Groutides, S. Price, K. Staples, and A. A. Votintseva for technical assistance. We thank Lynda Delph, Indiana University USA for the gift of seed. This work was supported by the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elaine C. Howell
    • 1
  • Susan J. Armstrong
    • 1
  • Dmitry A. Filatov
    • 2
    Email author
  1. 1.School of BiosciencesUniversity of BirminghamBirminghamUK
  2. 2.Department of Plant SciencesUniversity of OxfordOxfordUK

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