Dating a hermaphrodite
The resulting molecular dating estimate suggested that the Y chromosomes of males and hermaphrodites diverged ∼73,000 yr ago (Yu et al.
2008), long before the origin of agriculture in Mesoamerica ∼6200 yr ago (Pope et al. It is worth further testing to establish the age of the HSY, because if the HSY diverged very recently from the MSY, papaya could offer the opportunity to identify the gene or genes responsible for the gender difference. The younger sex chromosomes of some species of plants, fish, and insects may provide insights into the mechanisms involved in the early stages of the evolution of separate sexes and of sex chromosomes (Delph et al. To understand the origin and accurately estimate the divergence time of the HSY and MSY, sequencing of HSY and MSY sequences is needed.
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The identification of the ancestral MSY3 haplotype will expedite investigation of the mutation leading to the domestication of the hermaphrodite Y Gender in papaya is genetically controlled by a sex-linked region that behaves like an XY sex chromosome, and maleness versus hermaphroditism is controlled by slightly different sex-specific Y chromosome regions, Y (HSY) in hermaphrodites and Y (MSY) in males. The corresponding region of the X is only 3.5 Mb, and both the Y and Y) is inviable, and the embryos abort 25–50 d after pollination, suggesting that the Y chromosome types are similar and that both are missing an essential gene that is functional in the X.
The sex chromosomes in other organisms, such as mammals, are ancient (Veyrunes et al. Moreover, sequencing multiple individuals of both males and hermaphrodites is necessary, because the origin or origins of hermaphrodites are unknown, and the AU9 MSY might not be closely related to the ancestor of the HSY, as we indeed show to be the case.
AU9 was collected from a papaya breeding program at Griffith University in Queensland, Australia, which was traced back to a papaya breeding program in Israel with plants of unknown origin.
Because of the pericentric location and high repeat content of the Y-linked region, we sequenced the papaya MSY using a reiterative BAC-by-BAC approach.
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