The invention of cross-species chromosome painting (ZOO-FISH) represents the most significant technical breakthrough in animal cytogenetics since the introduction of chromosomal banding techniques in the late 1960s and early 1970s. It has made it possible to compare the karyotypes of virtually any two vertebrate species that diverged up to 100 million years ago. With the availability of paint probes for more and more vertebrate species, the impact of ZOO-FISH on animal comparative cytogenetics is becoming far-reaching, leading to the great progress in cytogenetics and cytogenomics. Two detailed protocols for cross-species chromosome painting are provided here.


Formaldehyde Glycerol Dust Rubber Sulfuric Acid 



These protocols have been developed over the past 14 years after continuous efforts to further perfect each step by our colleagues, graduate students, and collaborators. We are particularly grateful to Malcolm A. Ferguson-Smith and Nigel P. Carter, who introduced us to the field of chromosome painting in the early 1990s. We thank Patricia CM O'Brien for a critical reading of the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Wellcome Trust Sanger InstituteWellcome Trust Genome Campus, HinxtonCambridgeUK
  2. 2.Institute of Cytology and GeneticsRussian Academy of SciencesNovosibirskRussian Federation

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