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The chromosomes of the mussel Mytilus galloprovincialis were analysed by means of chromomycin A3 (CMA), distamycin A/DAPI (DA/DAPI), DAPIactinomycin D (DAPIAMD) and chromomycin A3/distamycin ADAPI(CDD) fluorescence banding techniques, C-banding, silver staining, N-banding and in situ hybridization with 18S28S rDNA and telomereprobes. 18S+28S rDNA clusters were located on the telomeres of two pairs of submetasubtelocentric chromosomes. The nucleolar organizing regions (NORs) were associated with bright CMA fluorescence, dull DAPI fluorescence and C- and N-positive bands, but not all four NOR-associated heterochromatin bands showed bright CMA fluorescence in a given cell; intra- and interindividual variability was found in this character. Additional non-ribosomal C-bands did not show any differential fluorescent behaviour.