The evolutionary history of human and chimpanzee Y-chromosome gene loss

George H. Perry, Raul Y. Tito, Brian C. Verrelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations

Abstract

Recent studies have suggested that gene gain and loss may contribute significantly to the divergence between humans and chimpanzees. Initial comparisons of the human and chimpanzee Y-chromosomes indicate that chimpanzees have a disproportionate loss of Y-chromosome genes, which may have implications for the adaptive evolution of sex-specific as well as reproductive traits, especially because one of the genes lost in chimpanzees is critically involved in spermatogenesis in humans. Here we have characterized Y-chromosome sequences in gorilla, bonobo, and several chimpanzee subspecies for 7 chimpanzee gene-disruptive mutations. Our analyses show that 6 of these gene-disruptive mutations predate chimpanzee-bonobo divergence at ∼1.8 MYA, which indicates significant Y-chromosome change in the chimpanzee lineage relatively early in the evolutionary divergence of humans and chimpanzees.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)853-859
Number of pages7
JournalMolecular biology and evolution
Volume24
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2007

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics

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