The distribution of repetitive DNAs along chromosomes in plants revealed by self-genomic in situ hybridization.J Genet Genomics. 2007 May; 34(5):437-48.JG
The distribution of repetitive DNAs along chromosomes is one of the crucial elements for understanding the organization and the evolution of plant genomes. Using a modified genomic in situ hybridization (GISH) procedure, fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with genomic DNA to their own chromosomes (called self-genomic in situ hybridization, self-GISH) was carried out in six selected plant species with different genome size and amount of repetitive DNA. Nonuniform distribution of the fluorescent labeled probe DNA was observed on the chromosomes of all the species that were tested. The signal patterns varied among species and were related to the genome size. The chromosomes of the small Arabidopsis genome were labeled almost only in the pericentromeric regions and the nucleolus organizer regions (NORs). The signals in the relatively small genomes, rice, sorghum, and Brassica oleracea var. capitata L., were dispersed along the chromosome lengths, with a predominant distribution in the pericentromeric or proximal regions and some heterochromatic arms. All chromosomes of the large genomes, maize and barley, were densely labeled with strongly labeled regions and weakly labeled or unlabeled regions being arranged alternatively throughout the lengths. In addition, enhanced signal bands were shown in all pericentromeres and the NORs in B. oleracea var. capitata and in all pericentromeric regions and certain intercalary sites in barley. The enhanced signal band pattern in barley was found consistent with the N-banding pattern of this species. The GISH with self-genomic DNA was compared with FISH with C(o)t-1 DNA in rice, and their signal patterns are found to be basically consistent. Our results showed that the self-GISH signals actually reflected the hybridization of genomic repetitive DNAs to the chromosomes, thus the self-GISH technique would be useful for revealing the distribution of the regions where repetitive DNAs concentrate along chromosomes and some chromatin differentiation associated with repetitive DNAs in plants.