Qualitative analysis of constitutive heterochromatin and primate evolution

F. García, M. Garcia, L. Mora, L. Alarcón, J. Egozcue, M. Ponsà

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


The results of qualitative heterochromatin analysis in 16 species of primates: Homo sapiens, Pan troglodytes and Gorilla gorilla (F. Hominidae), Hylobates syndactilus (F. Hylobatidae), Macaca fascicularis, M. tibetana, Mandrillus sphinx, M. leucophaeus, Cercopithecus aethiops, C. sabaeus and C. albogularis (F. Cercopithecidae), Cebus apella, Ateles belzebuth hybridus, Aotus azarae, Saimiri sciureus and Lagothrix lagothricha (F. Cebidae) are presented in this work. We characterized heterochromatin using: (a) in situ digestion with restriction enzymes AluI, HaeIII, RsaI and Sau3A, and (b) chromosome staining with DA/DAPI on unbanded chromosomes, on C-banded chromosomes and on sequentially G-C-banded chromosomes. The aim of this work was to relate the qualitative characteristics of constitutive heterochromatin observed with the cytogenetic evolutive processes in the primate group. Results obtained show that (1) in the family Cercopithecidae, Papionini species do not present chromosomal rearrangements when their karyotypes are compared and the heterochromatin characteristics are uniform, while Cercopithecini species show a high number of chromosomal reorganizations, but they have the same heterochromatic characteristics; (2) the Platyrrhini species analysed show variability in their karyological and heterochromatic characteristics; (3) the Hominoidea present two different situations: Pan, Gorilla and Homo with few chromosomal reorganizations among their karyotypes but with a high variability in their heterochromatin characteristics, and Hylobates with low heterochromatin variability and a highly derived karyotype. Speciation processes related to chromosome changes and heterochromatin variations in different groups of primates are discussed. © 2003 The Linnean Society of London.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-124
JournalBiological Journal of the Linnean Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2003


  • Chromosomes
  • Cytogenetics
  • Heterochromatin
  • Restriction enzymes


Dive into the research topics of 'Qualitative analysis of constitutive heterochromatin and primate evolution'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this