Faculty Mentor

Dr. Kathryn Kohl


College of Arts and Sciences


Department of Biology



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Drosophila melanogaster, commonly referred to as fruit flies, possess a group of genes that when mutated can cause sensitivity to DNA damaging agents. These mutagen sensitive (mus) genes are likely involved in DNA repair, and one of these genes, mus109, was the focus of this study. To perform the experiment, complementation crosses were set up between the three mus109 alleles: mus109lS, mus109D1 and mus109D2. The wild-type DGRP-59 was used as the control. For each cross, twenty vials were scored. Brood one contained ten vials that were mock treated with distilled water, and brood two contained ten vials that were treated with the alkylating agent methyl methanesulfonate (MMS). The relative survival was calculated as the ratio of mutants and non-mutants in brood 2, normalized to brood 1. An ANOVA analysis indicated that there was a significant difference in survival rate between the various allelic combinations. Pairwise analysis revealed that the mus109D1allele demonstrated greater allelic strength compared to mus109D2. Crosses with the hypomorphic mus109D2 allele yielded a higher relative survival rate as compared to mus109D1 and this value was not statistically different from DGRP-59.

Publication Date





This project was supported by the SC INBRE grant from the National Institute of General Medical Sciences (8 P20 GM103499) of the National Institutes of Health.

Testing the Allelic Strength of Drosophila melanogaster mus109 Alleles

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