The evolution of chromosomal sex determination and dosage compensation

Curr Biol. 1996 Feb 1;6(2):149-62. doi: 10.1016/s0960-9822(02)00448-7.


In many species, sex is determined by a system based on X and Y chromosomes, the latter having lost much of their genetic activity. Y chromosomes have evolved independently many times, and the associated change in gene dosage in the heterogametic (XY) sex is often compensated for by regulatory mechanisms which ensure equal amounts of gene products of X-linked loci in males and females. There have recently been substantial advances in our knowledge of the molecular biology and genetics of sex chromosomes and dosage compensation, and in our understanding of the population genetic processes which are involved in their evolution.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biological Evolution*
  • Dosage Compensation, Genetic*
  • Models, Genetic
  • Sex Differentiation / genetics*
  • X Chromosome
  • Y Chromosome