3. Analyzing Genetic Elements Involved in Segregation Distortion

Luke Gingell Bethel College, Jesse Mast Bethel College
Faculty Sponsor(s): Janna McLean Bethel College
Mendel’s first law states that alleles of a given locus separate independently of each other during gamete formation. In addition, this law stipulates that every gamete formed will have an equal probability of receiving an allele from a given locus. This law, although incredibly wide in its application, fails to account for instances where observed genetic frequencies of a locus fall outside the expected Mendelian segregation ratio. One such example where the expected frequencies are not Mendelian is a meiotic drive system in Drosophila melanogaster. This system, termed Segregation Distorter (SD), causes preferential transmission of the SD chromosome in heterozygous SD/SD+ males. The preferential transmission is caused by an induced failure of the SD+ spermatid to condense via the normal histone-to-protamine transition observed during spermatogenesis. The SD system consists of several basic elements, among which Segregation distorter (Sd), Responder (Rsp) and Enhancer(E(SD)) are considered the most important. To better understand the mechanism of SD, genetic mutants containing various components of the SD system were created and tested for their level of distortion. Additionally, tests were performed to determine if a knockdown of protamine could mimic the effect of Sd.
Poster Presentation

When & Where

Irwin Library 3rd Floor