Lethal and Semilethal Mutation Frequency of the First and Second Chromosomes in Two Natural Populations of "Drosophila melanogaster"
Krick, Frederick M.
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The problem. The present study was undertaken to examine potential genetic diversity as measured by the lethal gene frequencies between two natural populations of "Drosophila melanogaster". High levels of trichloroethylene (TCE) and other suspected mutagens and carcinogens, i.e., vinyl chloride, chloroform, etc., have reportedly been found in subsurface soil and waters near downtown Des Moines, Iowa. Lethal gene frequency of the first (X) and second chromosomes of the toxic population sample (captured within the toxic plume locale), was determined by genetic analysis and compared to that of a "control" population sample captured in an area believed to be free of chemical contamination. Procedure. The Basc technique for determining X-linked lethal mutation frequency and the Cy/Pm method for determining second chromosome lethal mutation frequency were employed. Mutation frequencies were calculated and data was analyzed by the Chi-square method. Findings. The X-linked lethal mutation frequency of the control population sample was found to be 0%. Compared with the toxic population X-linked lethal mutation frequency of 1.47%, the difference is not significant. Drastic (lethal + semilethal) mutation frequency of the control population second chromosomes was found to be 48%. When compared to the toxic population second chromosome drastic mutation frequency of 56%, the difference is not significant. Conclusion. The data obtained from this study showed that the chemical contamination of the toxic population sample habitat had no significant effect on the frequency of X-linked or second chromosome lethal mutation.
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