Interspersion of repetitive and nonrepetitive DNA sequences in the Drosophila melanogaster genome

Cell. 1975 Feb;4(2):141-55. doi: 10.1016/0092-8674(75)90121-x.


Cot analysis shows that the haploid Drosophila genome contains 12 percent rapidly reassociating, highly reiterated DNA, 12 percent middle repetitive DNA with an average reiteration frequency of 70, and 70 percent single-copy DNA. The distribution of the middle repetitive sequences in the genome has been studied by an examination in the electron microscope of the structures obtained when middle repetitive sequences present on large DNA strands reassociate and by the hydroxyapatite binding methods developed by Davidson et al. (1973). At least one third by weight of the middle repetitive sequences are interspersed in single-copy sequences. These interspersed middle repetitive sequences have a fairly uniform distribution of lengths from less than 0.5 to 13 kb, with a number average value of 5.6 kb. The average distance between middle repetitive sequences is greater than 13 kb. The data do not exclude the possibility that essentially all of the middle repetitive sequences have the interspersion pattern described above; however, it is possible that some of the middle repetitive sequences of Drosophila are clustered in stretches of length much greater than 13 kb. The interspersion pattern of the middle repetitive sequences in Drosophila is quite different from that which occurs in the sea urchin, in Xenopus, in rat, and probably many other higher eucaryotes.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Binding Sites
  • Cell Nucleus / analysis*
  • DNA* / analysis
  • DNA, Single-Stranded
  • Deoxyribonucleotides / analysis
  • Drosophila melanogaster
  • Genes*
  • Haploidy
  • Kinetics
  • Mathematics
  • Microscopy, Electron
  • Molecular Weight
  • Nucleic Acid Conformation


  • DNA, Single-Stranded
  • Deoxyribonucleotides
  • DNA