Production of Androgenetic Zebrafish (Danio Rerio)


To help investigate the evolutionary origin of the imprinting (parent-of-origin mono-allelic expression) of paternal genes observed in mammals, we constructed haploid and diploid androgenetic zebrafish (Danio rerio). Haploid androgenotes were produced by fertilizing eggs that had been X-ray irradiated to eliminate the maternal genome. Subsequent inhibition of the first mitotic division of haploid androgenotes by heat shock produced diploid androgenotes. The lack of inheritance of maternal-specific DNA markers (RAPD and SSR) by putative diploid and haploid androgenotes confirmed the androgenetic origin of their genomes. Marker analysis was performed on 18 putative androgenotes (five diploids and 13 haploids) from six families. None of 157 maternal-specific RAPD markers analyzed, some of which were apparently homozygous, were passed on to any of these putative androgenotes. A mean of 7.7 maternal-specific markers were assessed per family. The survival of androgenetic zebrafish suggests that if paternal imprinting occurs in zebrafish, it does not result in essential genes being inactivated when their expression is required for development. Production of haploid androgenotes can be used to determine the meiotic recombination rate in male zebrafish. Androgenesis may also provide useful information about the mechanism of sex determination in zebrafish.

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