Specific downregulation of spermatogenesis genes targeted by 22G RNAs in hybrid sterile males associated with an X-Chromosome introgression.

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Title: Specific downregulation of spermatogenesis genes targeted by 22G RNAs in hybrid sterile males associated with an X-Chromosome introgression.
Authors: Li, R
Ren, X
Bi, Y
Ho, VW
Hsieh, CL
Young, A
Zhang, Z
Lin, T
Zhao, Y
Miao, L
Sarkies, P
Zhao, Z
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: Hybrid incompatibility (HI) prevents gene flow between species, thus lying at the heart of speciation genetics. One of the most common HIs is male sterility. Two superficially contradictory observations exist for hybrid male sterility. First, an introgression on the X chromosome is more likely to produce male sterility than on autosome (so-called large-X theory); second, spermatogenesis genes are enriched on the autosomes but depleted on the X chromosome (demasculization of X chromosome). Analysis of gene expression in Drosophila hybrids suggests a genetic interaction between X chromosome and autosomes that is essential for male fertility. However, the prevalence of such an interaction and its underlying mechanism remain largely unknown. Here we examine the interaction in nematode species by contrasting the expression of both coding genes and transposable elements (TEs) between hybrid sterile males and its parental nematode males. We use two lines of hybrid sterile males each carrying an independent introgression fragment from C. briggsae X chromosome in an otherwise C. nigoni background, which demonstrate similar defects in spermatogenesis. We observe a similar pattern of downregulated genes that are specific for spermatogenesis between the two hybrids. Importantly, the downregulated genes caused by the X chromosome introgressions show a significant enrichment on the autosomes, supporting an epistatic interaction between the X chromosome and autosomes. We investigate the underlying mechanism of the interaction by measuring small RNAs and find a subset of 22G RNAs specifically targeting the downregulated spermatogenesis genes are significantly upregulated in hybrids, suggesting that perturbation of small RNA-mediated regulation may contribute to the X-autosome interaction.
Issue Date: 18-May-2016
Date of Acceptance: 16-May-2016
ISSN: 1549-5469
Publisher: Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press
Start Page: 1219
End Page: 1232
Journal / Book Title: Genome Research
Volume: 26
Copyright Statement: This article is distributed exclusively by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press for the first six months after the full-issue publication date (see After six months, it is available under a Creative Commons License (Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International), as described at
Keywords: Bioinformatics
06 Biological Sciences
11 Medical And Health Sciences
Publication Status: Published
Appears in Collections:Clinical Sciences
Molecular Sciences
Faculty of Medicine

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