Allelic asymmetry of the Lethal hybrid rescue (Lhr) gene expression in the hybrid between Drosophila melanogaster and D. simulans: confirmation by using genetic variations of D. melanogaster

Genetica. 2014 Feb;142(1):43-8. doi: 10.1007/s10709-013-9752-3. Epub 2013 Dec 31.


In the cross between Drosophila melanogaster females and D. simulans males, hybrid males die at the late larval stage, and the sibling females also die at later stages at high temperatures. Removing the D. simulans allele of the Lethal hybrid rescue gene (Lhr (sim) ) improves the hybrid incompatibility phenotypes. However, the loss-of-function mutation of Lhr (sim) (Lhr (sim0) ) does not rescue the hybrid males in crosses with several D. melanogaster strains. We first describe the genetic factor possessed by the D. melanogaster strains. It has been suggested that removing the D. melanogaster allele of Lhr (Lhr (mel) ), that is Lhr (mel0) , does not have the hybrid male rescue effect, contrasting to Lhr (sim0) . Because the expression level of the Lhr gene is known to be Lhr (sim) > Lhr (mel) in the hybrid, Lhr (mel0) may not lead to enough of a reduction in total Lhr expression. Then, there is a possibility that the D. melanogaster factor changes the expression level to Lhr (sim) < Lhr (mel) . But in fact, the expression level was Lhr (sim) > Lhr (mel) in the hybrid irrespectively of the presence of the factor. At last, we showed that Lhr (mel0) slightly improves the viability of hybrid females, which was not realized previously. All of the present results are consistent with the allelic asymmetry model of the Lhr gene expression in the hybrid.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Crosses, Genetic
  • Dosage Compensation, Genetic*
  • Drosophila / classification
  • Drosophila / genetics*
  • Drosophila / growth & development*
  • Drosophila Proteins / genetics*
  • Drosophila Proteins / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Gene Expression
  • Genetic Speciation
  • Genetic Variation
  • Genome, Insect
  • Male
  • Mutation
  • Phenotype
  • X Chromosome


  • Drosophila Proteins
  • Lhr protein, Drosophila