The Detection of Mutations in Drosophila melanogaster

  • S. Abrahamson
  • E. B. Lewis


In the chapter we will take up the principal tests for detecting newly arising mutations in the germ cells of Drosophila melanogaster. Our approach will be to outline the basic methodology for each type of mutation test presented and to indicate what we believe to be the major pitfalls in each case. We shall take up only those tests which seem to be particularly practical and informative for those interested in screening chemicals for their possible mutagenic action on higher organisms. A number of mutational tests of a more complex nature than those which we will describe here have been devised by Muller and his collaborators and presented in detail by Muller and Oster (1963)—for example, tests designed to detect (1) the accumulation of mutants after many generations of chronic treatment with a mutagen, (2) mutants with relatively slight deleterious effects, (3) diverse categories of mutations in the same experiment, and (4) mutants in small specified regions of the genome.


Germ Cell Chromosomal Rearrangement Virgin Female Salivary Gland Chromosome Balancer Chromosome 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1971

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Abrahamson
    • 1
  • E. B. Lewis
    • 2
  1. 1.Departments of Zoology and GeneticsUniversity of WisconsinMadisonUSA
  2. 2.Division of BiologyCalifornia Institute of TechnologyPasadenaUSA

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