Genetics of the W locus in foxes and expression of its lethal effects

J Hered. 1975 Nov-Dec;66(6):331-8. doi: 10.1093/oxfordjournals.jhered.a108643.


The Georgian white mutation for coat color in foxes is inherited as a partially dominant character. It is allelic to the previously observed white-faced and platinum mutations. It was established that large litter size in Georgian white females and long daylight during pregnancy promote embryonic viability in homozygotes for this mutation. As a result, in offspring segregation patterns for coat color the proportion of homozygotes increases and that of heterozygotes decreases. It is suggested that a competitive relationship between embryos with different genotypes is established as early as at the preimplantation stage.

MeSH terms

  • Alleles
  • Animals
  • Female
  • Fetal Death / genetics
  • Genes, Dominant
  • Hair Color*
  • Heterozygote
  • Homozygote
  • Light
  • Male
  • Phenotype
  • Pregnancy