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Molecular and chromosomal analysis of ribosomal cistrons in two cartilaginous fish, Taeniura lymma and Raja montagui (Chondrichthyes, Batoidea)

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We used silver nitrate staining, CMA3 and FISH to study the chromosomal localization of both the major ribosomal genes and the nucleolar organizer regions as well as that of the minor ribosomal genes (5S rDNA) in two species of Batoidea, Taeniura lymma (Dasyatidae) and Raja montagui (Rajidae). In both species, all the metaphases examined showed the presence of multiple NOR-bearing sites, while the gene for 5S rRNA proved to be localized on two chromosome pairs. Furthermore, one of the two 5S rDNA sites in T. lymma was shown to be co-localized with the major ribosomal cluster. The presence of multiple nucleolar organizer regions in the two species might be interpreted as being the result of intraspecific polymorphisms, or as a phenomenon of the amplified transposition of mobile elements of the genome. We also determined the nucleotide sequence of the 5S rRNA gene, consisting of 564 bp in R. montagui and 612 bp in T. lymma. We also found TATA-like and (TGC) n trinucleotides, (CA) n dinucleotides and (GTGA) n tetranucleotides, which probably influence gene regulation.

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base pair(s)

CMA3 :

chromomycin A3


fluorescent in situ hybridization


nucleolar organizer region


non transcribed sequences


phosphate buffer saline


polymerase chain reaction


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Rocco, L., Costagliola, D., Fiorillo, M. et al. Molecular and chromosomal analysis of ribosomal cistrons in two cartilaginous fish, Taeniura lymma and Raja montagui (Chondrichthyes, Batoidea). Genetica 123, 245–253 (2005).

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