Evolutionary implications of duplications and Balbiani rings in Drosophila. A study of Drosophila serrata

Genome. 1990 Aug;33(4):478-85. doi: 10.1139/g90-071.


Drosophila serrata, a species of subgroup montium, exhibits in its salivary-gland chromosomes a high number of inverted tandem duplications and a well-formed Balbiani ring. A photographic map, the duplications, and the Balbiani ring of this species are presented. Also presented are the most prominent puffs during normal larval development and after ecdysone treatment, as well as intercalary heterochromatin regions of the above chromosomes. These data are discussed and compared with those of Drosophila auraria, another species of subgroup montium. All the inverted tandem duplications found in both species are homozygous and are not accompanied by other types of chromosomal rearrangements. These results argue in favor of the relatively old origin of these structures. The similarity of the structure and the developmental profile of the Balbiani ring 1 in both species may indicate a necessary role served by the Balbiani ring 1 and hence its selection during evolution.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biological Evolution*
  • Chromosome Banding
  • Chromosome Inversion
  • Drosophila / genetics*
  • Heterochromatin / ultrastructure
  • Multigene Family*
  • Repetitive Sequences, Nucleic Acid*
  • Ring Chromosomes*
  • Salivary Glands / cytology


  • Heterochromatin