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Sex-Dependent Gene Expression and Evolution of the Drosophila Transcriptome

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Science  13 Jun 2003:
Vol. 300, Issue 5626, pp. 1742-1745
DOI: 10.1126/science.1085881

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Abstract

Comparison of the gene-expression profiles between adults of Drosophila melanogaster and Drosophila simulans has uncovered the evolution of genes that exhibit sex-dependent regulation. Approximately half the genes showed differences in expression between the species, and among these, ∼83% involved a gain, loss, increase, decrease, or reversal of sex-biased expression. Most of the interspecific differences in messenger RNA abundance affect male-biased genes. Genes that differ in expression between the species showed functional clustering only if they were sex-biased. Our results suggest that sex-dependent selection may drive changes in expression of many of the most rapidly evolving genes in the Drosophila transcriptome.

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