Contrasting patterns of DNA sequence arrangement in Apis mellifera (honeybee) and Musca domestica (housefly)

Chromosoma. 1976 Dec 6;59(1):1-12. doi: 10.1007/BF00327705.


We have examined the organization of the repeated and single copy DNA sequences in the genomes of two insects, the honeybee (Apis mellifera) and the housefly (Musca domestica). Analysis of the reassociation kinetics of honeybee DNA fragments 330 and 2,200 nucleotides long shows that approximately 90% of both size fragments is composed entirely of non-repeated sequences. Thus honeybee DNA contains few or no repeated sequences interspersed with nonrepeated sequences at a distance of less than a few thousand nucleotides. On the other hand, the reassociation kinetics of housefly DNA fragments 250 and 2,000 nucleotides long indicates that less than 15% of the longer fragments are composed entirely of single copy sequences. A large fraction of the housefly DNA therefore contains repeated sequences spaced less than a few thousand nucleotides apart. Reassociated repetitive DNA from the housefly was treated with S1 nuclease and sized on agarose A-50. The S1 resistant sequences have a bimodal distribution of lengths. Thirty-three percent is greater than 1,500 nucleotide pairs, and 67% has an average size about 300 nucleotide pairs. The genome of the housefly appears to have at least 70% of its DNA arranged as short repeats interspersed with single copy sequences in a pattern qualitatively similar to that of most eukaryotic genomes.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Bees / physiology*
  • Biological Evolution
  • Chromatography, Agarose
  • DNA / analysis*
  • Houseflies / physiology*
  • Kinetics
  • Nucleic Acid Renaturation


  • DNA