Centromere repositioning in the X chromosome of XO/XO mammals, Ryukyu spiny rat

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Two species of Ryukyu spiny rat, Tokudaia osimensis and Tokudaia tokunoshimensis, have an XO/XO sex chromosome constitution with no cytogenetically visible Y chromosome in both sexes. The single X chromosomes of T. osimensis and T. tokunoshimensis are submetacentric and subtelocentric, respectively. It was therefore suggested that a pericentric inversion event occurred in the X chromosome of either species. To identify X chromosome rearrangements that have occurred between the two species, we mapped 22 mouse cDNA clones of the X-linked genes on the chromosomes of the two species by direct R-banding FISH. The gene orders of the X chromosomes were conserved in the two species, whereas the position of the centromere on the X chromosome was different. This result indicates that the rearrangement which occurred in either of the X chromosomes after the two species diverged from a common ancestor involved not pericentric inversion but centromere repositioning.

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