Autonomy and nonautonomy of sex determination in triploid intersex mosaics of C. elegans

Pepper Schedin, Craig P. Hunter, William B. Wood

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The primary sex-determining signal in Caenorhabditis elegans is the ratio of X chromosomes to sets of autosomes (X/A ratio), normally 1.0 in hermaphrodites (XX) and 0.5 in males (XO). XX triploids (X/A=0.67) are males, but if these animals carry a partial duplication of the X chromosome such that X/A≅0.7, they develop as intersexes that are sexually mosaic. We have analyzed these mosaics using Nomarski microscopy and in situ hybridization to obtain information on whether sex determination decisions can be made independently in different cells and tissues, and when these commitments are made. The observed patterns of male and female cells in individual animals indicate that sex determination decisions can be influenced by anterior-posterior position and that sex determination decisions can be made as late as the third larval stage of postembryonic development. Although these decisions clearly can be made independently in different lineages, they show substantial biases toward one sex or the other in individual animals. We interpret these results to suggest that sex determination in C. elegans is not entirely cell autonomous.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)863-879
Number of pages17
JournalDevelopment
Volume112
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1991
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Triploidy
Caenorhabditis elegans
X Chromosome
In Situ Hybridization
Microscopy

Keywords

  • Caenorhabditis elegans
  • Commitment
  • Development
  • Differentiation
  • Gradient
  • In situ hybridization
  • Intersex
  • Mosaicism
  • Sex determination
  • Vitellogenins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cell Biology
  • Anatomy

Cite this

Autonomy and nonautonomy of sex determination in triploid intersex mosaics of C. elegans. / Schedin, Pepper; Hunter, Craig P.; Wood, William B.

In: Development, Vol. 112, No. 3, 07.1991, p. 863-879.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Schedin, Pepper ; Hunter, Craig P. ; Wood, William B. / Autonomy and nonautonomy of sex determination in triploid intersex mosaics of C. elegans. In: Development. 1991 ; Vol. 112, No. 3. pp. 863-879.
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