A WF9 strain of maize with the RD subtype of the S male-sterile cytoplasm (CMS-S) was converted to the inbred M825 nuclear background by recurrent backcrossing. The organization of the mitochondrial genomes of the F 1 and succeeding backcross progenies was analyzed and compared with the progenitor RD-WF9 using probes derived from the S1 and S2 mitochondrial episomes, and probes containing the genes for cytochrome c oxidase subunit I (coxI), cytochrome c oxidase subunit II (coxII) and apocytochrome b (cob). Changes in mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) organization were observed for S1-, S2-, and coxI-homologous sequences that involve loss of homologous restriction enzyme fragments present in the RD-WF9 progenitor. With the coxI probe, the loss of certain fragments was accompanied by the appearance of a fragment not detectable in the progenitor. The changes observed indicate the effect of the nuclear genome on the differential replication of specific mitochondrial subgenomic entities.
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