The B chromosomes of the grasshopper Eyprepocnemis plorans and the intragenomic conflict

Genetica. 2003 Jan;117(1):77-84. doi: 10.1023/a:1022311320394.


The grasshopper Eyprepocnemis plorans harbours an extremely widespread polymorphism for supernumerary (B) chromosomes, which is found in almost all circum-Mediterranean and Caucasian populations hitherto analysed. B chromosomes in this species have been shown to evolve through several stages of parasitic and near-neutral nature, presumably because of an arms race between the standard (A) and B chromosomes. This intragenomic conflict can either be solved with the extinction of the neutralised B chromosome or, more interestingly, with the replacement of the neutralised B by a mutant version being parasitic again and thus prolonging B chromosome life. This species thus provides a complete view of the long-term life-cycle of parasitic B chromosomes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Chromosomes / genetics*
  • Evolution, Molecular
  • Gene Frequency
  • Grasshoppers / genetics*
  • Models, Genetic
  • Polymorphism, Genetic / genetics*
  • Tandem Repeat Sequences