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A collection of human Y-derived cosmid clones was screened with a plasmid insert containing a member of the human X chromosome alphoid repeat family, DXZ1. Two positive cosmids were isolated and the repeats they contained were investigated by Southern blotting, in situ hybridization and sequence analysis. On hybridization to human genomic DNAs, the expected cross-hybridization characteristic of all alphoid sequences was seen and, in addition, a 5500 base EcoRI fragment was found to be characteristic of a Y-specific alphoid repeat. Dosage experiments demonstrated that there are about 100 copies of this 5500 base EcoRI alphoid fragment on the Y chromosome. Studies utilizing DNA from human-mouse hybrids containing only portions of the Y chromosome and in situ hybridizations to chromosome spreads demonstrated the Y centromeric localization of the 5500 base repeat. Cross-hybridization to autosomes 13, 14 and 15 was also seen; however, these chromosomes lacked detectable copies of the 5500 base EcoRI repeat sequence arrangement. Sequence analysis of portions of the Y repeat and portions of the DXZ1 repeat demonstrated about 70% homology to each other and of each to the human consensus alphoid sequence. The 5500 base EcoRI fragment was not seen in gorilla, orangutan or chimpanzee male DNA.


Journal article


J Mol Biol

Publication Date





477 - 485


Animals, Base Sequence, Cell Line, Centromere, Chromosomes, DNA, Female, Gorilla gorilla, Humans, Male, Mice, Nucleic Acid Hybridization, Pan troglodytes, Plasmids, Pongo pygmaeus, Repetitive Sequences, Nucleic Acid, X Chromosome, Y Chromosome