Numerous chromosomal polymorphisms in a natural population of rice rats (Oryzomys, Cricetidae)

Cytogenet Cell Genet. 1983;35(2):131-5. doi: 10.1159/000131854.


Based on G- and C-banded karyotypes of 10 specimens of rice rats, genus Oryzomys (a member of the macconnelli-capito complex but species identification is not possible at this time) from a single isolated population, we found at least nine different centric fusion/fission polymorphisms. No two individuals examined had the same karyotype. Polymorphic variation appears to be stable in the population and not the result of hybridization, human disturbance, or non-specific mutagenic agents. Among the 14 largest chromosomes, polymorphism is restricted to fusion/fission rearrangements. Among the smaller ones, there is polymorphism in the total number of euchromatic arms, which indicates that rearrangements other than fusion/fission exist within our sample. Data from these rice rats document the presence of a greater number of chromosomal polymorphisms within a single, natural population than have previously been reported in a higher vertebrate.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Arvicolinae / genetics*
  • Chromosomes*
  • Female
  • Karyotyping
  • Male
  • Polymorphism, Genetic*