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Inheritance in Nicotiana tabacum XXIX: The relationships of residual chromosome homology to interspecific gene transfer

Inheritance in Nicotiana tabacum XXIX: The relationships of residual chromosome homology to interspecific gene transfer

Amer. Nat 92: 267-78

Introgressive transfer of a genetic locus of one species into the genome of a second species involves an interspecific chromosomal exchange. This exchange may result from a random break and reunion or the exchange may be nonrandom, involving certain chromosomes of the recipient species more frequently than others. In order to see which of these alternatives is more likely, the locus Ws, responsible for nonwhite seedlings, of N. plumbaginifolia was transferred repeatedly into the genome of N. tabacum. The method used involved crossing autotetraploid. N. tabacum with diploid N. plumbaginifolia to give the sesquidiploid hybrid; this latter was then back crossed to N. tabacum. Repeated back crossing yielded diploid N. tabacum plants with a single marked chromosome of N. plumbaginifolia. By selfing four heterozygous segmental substitution plants of independent origin, a number of homozygous segmental substitution lines were obtained; these lines showed some quantitative variability. It was found that out of 14 chromosome transfers, eight involved the same chromosome of N. tabacum; the other six transfers were equally distributed over three other chromosomes. This nonrandom distribution supports the view that some residual homology exists between the chromosomes of the two species. An alternative method of transferring a locus from one species to another involves treating heterozygous addition plants, carrying one extra alien chromosome, with certain mutagenic agents. However a mutagen-induced translocation is a random event and makes no use of residual homology between chromosomes of the two species. It is pointed out that when residual homology is utilized, the chances are better that in at least some of the segmental substitution lines, the introgressed segment will provide a successful substitute for the replaced genes.

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