r-newsCell Biology

Chromosomes Yield New Clue to Pairing in Meiosis

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Science  05 Jul 1996:
Vol. 273, Issue 5271, pp. 35
DOI: 10.1126/science.273.5271.35


Production of normal male and female gametes by meiosis requires that chromosome partners, one from the individual's mother and its counterpart from his or her father, find each other and pair up before segregating into the two daughter cells in the first stage of meiosis. Exactly how this is accomplished is unclear, but new work, some of which is published in this issue (p. 118 ), should help clarify the mystery for at least one type of chromosome pairing and segregation. The results suggest that the chromosome partners are brought together by their heterochromatin, a result that also helps provide a function for this otherwise enigmatic, repetitive-sequence-laden genetic material.