PMID: 5914689Feb 1, 1966

DNA synthesis in the ooplasm of Drosophila melanogaster

The Journal of Cell Biology


Tritiated thymidine was injected into 2-day-old Drosophila melanogaster females, and tissue sections were prepared from the ovary for radioautography with both the light and electron microscopes. Besides the expected incorporation of H(3)-thymidine into nuclei of nurse cells and follicle cells, there was a relatively high level of incorporation of label into ooplasmic DNA. The highest level of incorporation occurred at stage 12. At the same time, the 15 nurse cell nuclei also incorporate thymidine in spite of the fact that they are breaking down and degenerating. The label in the ooplasm is not removed by extraction with DNase (although this removes nuclear label) unless extraction is preceded by a treatment with protease. Electron microscopic radioautography revealed that 36% of the silver grains resulting from decay of H(3)-thymidine are found over mitochondria, with a further 28% being located within 0.25 micro of these organelles. The remaining 36% of the silver grains was not found to be associated with any organelles, and it probably represents synthesis in the cytoplasm by the "storage DNA" characteristic of many eggs. It is suggested that one mechanism acting throughout the egg chamber is responsible for the synchronous...Continue Reading


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