Comparative Mapping Identifies the Fusion Point of an Ancient Mammalian X-Autosomal Rearrangement Academic Article uri icon


  • Previous comparisons of gene location in the three major groups of mammals (eutherians, marsupials, and monotremes) have suggested that the long arm of the human X represents the ancestral mammalian X chromosome, whereas the short arm represents an autosomal region(s) recently added to the eutherian X chromosome. To identify the fusion point of this ancient X-autosome rearrangement, we have mapped four genes, three of which map near the centromere of the human Xp, in marsupials and in a monotreme. We found that ARAF1, ALAS2, and GATA1 are located on the X chromosome in marsupials, and ALAS2 and GATA1 are also located on the X in the platypus. This implies that the proximal short arm of the human X chromosome, including the centromere, was part of the ancestral mammalian X chromosome. The fusion point between the conserved region and the recently added regions therefore maps to human Xp11.23, although gene order on the human X indicates that there has been some rearrangement of this region.

publication date

  • July 1996