CARYOLOGIA Vol. 54, no. 1, 2001
CARYOLOGIA Vol. 54, no. 1: 1-16, 2001
Characterization of the seed reserves in Tillandsia (Bromeliaceae) and ultrastructural aspects of their use at germination
AMBRETTA CECCHI FIORDI, MARIA ROSA PALANDRI, SILVIA TURICCHIA, GABRIELE TANI* and PIETRO Di FALCO
Dipartimento di Biologia Vegetale, Universita di Firenze, via La Pira, 4 - 50121 Firenze (Italy).
Abstract — The nature and the use of the reserves accumulated in the seed of
Tillandsia, a markedly epiphyte genus, are especially important in consideration of
the subsequent seedling development. As a matter of fact, the embryo radicle degenerates
precociously without emerging at the germination and the sole function of
the root system is that of anchoring to the substratum.
The present cytochemical and ultrastructural study carried out on mature seeds has
highlighted the presence of proteins and lipids, in both the endosperm and in the
cotyledon, which are both well-developed; in addition, the endosperm contains
starch and calcium oxalate. At germination the reserves, broken-down by enzymes,
are absorbed by the cotyledon in whose epidermis ultrastructural modifications,
correlated with this austorial function, appear. A part of the nutrients absorbed is
initially stored in the large vacuoles, of aleuronic origin, of the cotyledon
parenchyma. The result is a water uptake. It is in this manner that the water and
necessary nutrient needs of the seedling are satisfied during early development.
Key words: germination, seed, Tillandsia.
CARYOLOGIA Vol. 54, no. 1: 17-21, 2001
Nucleolar behaviour in a few legumes
R. MURUGESAN, N. CHANDRA, S.T. SANTHIYA, P.M. GOPINATH* and K.M. MARIMUTHU
Department of Genetics, Dr. A.L.M. Post Graduate Institute of Basic Medical Sciences, University of MadraTsa, ramani, Chennai -113,
Abstract — The nucleolus usually disintegrates at the end of prophase and gets reconstituted
at telophase. In a few instances it persists till meta- and ana-phases.
Persistence of nucleoli has been reported in a few angiosperms, algae and fungi. In
the light of the reports on the presence of persistent nucleoli in legumes it was of
interest to examine the root meristematic cells of twentyone leguminous plants belonging
to Papilionoideae for the persistence of nucleoli and ninteen of them exhibited
CARYOLOGIA Vol. 54, no. 1: 23-30, 2001
A molecular phylogenetic analysis in Gymnotus species (Pisces: Gymnotiformes) with inferences on chromosome evolution
FLORA M.C. FERNANDES-MATIOLI* and LURDES .F. ALMEIDA-TOLEDO
Laboratorio de Ictiogenetica, Departamento de Biologia, Institute de Biociencias, USP, Caixa Postal 11.461, CEP 05422-970, Universidade
de Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo, Brazil
Abstract — A phylogenetic analysis using 345 nucleotides sequenced from the mitochondrial
gene ND2 was carried out in the four Gymnotus species from the Upper-
Parana river system, Southeastern Brazil, G. carapo, G. pantherinus, G.
inaequilabiatus, and G. sylvius. A phylogeny is proposed in which G. pantherinus is
located as the most basal lineage within the group. G. carapo and G. sylvius lineages
present the most recent divergence; G, inaequilabiatus is the closest sister group in
relation to G. carapo and G. sylvius. New hypotheses of chromosome evolution in this
group of fish are proposed based on the phylogenetic tree reconstructed using the
sequence data. After an appraisal of karyotype data for species phylogeny
inferences, we suggest that karyotype data are useful for the early steps of
phylogenetic and chromosome evolution studies, and that the conjugation of
molecular and karyological approaches can improve the hypotheses formulation.
CARYOLOGIA Vol. 54, no. 1: 31-36, 2001
Localization of rDNA loci by Fluorescent In Situ Hybridization in some wild orchids from Italy (Orchidaceae)
S. D'EMERICO *'*, I. GALASSO 2, D. PIGNONE and A. SCRUGLI 3
1 Dipartimento di Biologia e Patologia Vegetale, Universita di Bari, Italy. 2 C.N.R., Istituto del Germoplasma, Bari, Italy.3 Dipartimento
di Scienze Botaniche, Universita di Cagliari, Italy.
Abstract — The 18S-5.8S-25S (pTa71) and 5S (pTa794) rDNA were used as
probes for in situ hybridization to reveal the physical localisation of ribosomal
genes in some species of orchids. Earlia robertiana (2n = 36) revealed one chromosome
pair with both pTa71 and pTa794 signals; Anacamptis papilionacea (2n = 32)
showed two pairs of 5S rDNA and one pair of 18S-25S sites; A. morio (2n = 36)
had two pairs of 18S-25S rDNA and one pair of 5S sites; the natural hybrid A. x
gennarii (A. morio x A. papilionacea, 34 chromosomes) showed three 18S-25S and
three 5S rDNA sites; finally, A. collina (2n = 36) showed only one pair of 18S-25S
rDNA and one pair of 5S rDNA sites. This preliminary contribution indicates that
repetitive DNA sequences in orchids may prove very useful for the understanding of
CARYOLOGIA Vol. 54, no. 1: 37-57, 2001
Cytotaxonomical notes on some rare endemic species of Allium (Alliaceae) from Greece
S. BRULLO*, A. GUGLIELMO, P. PAVONE and C. SALMERI
Dipartimento di Botanica, Universita di Catania, Via A. Longo, 19.1-95125 Catania, Italia
Abstract — Five Greek endemic species of Allium (A. meteoricum, A. parnassicum,
A. pilosum, A. luteolum and A. frigidum) are examined. The study, based on
field and herbarium investigations, allowed to better define the morphology, karyology
and chorology of these critical taxa as well as their relationships.
CARYOLOGIA Vol. 54, no. 1: 59-71, 2001
Genotoxic effects of chromium on polytene chromosomes of Chironomus riparius Meigen 1804 (Diptera, Chironomidae)
P. MlCHAILOVA, N. PETROVA2, G. SELLA3, S. BOVERO3, L. RAMELLA3, F. REGOLI and V. ZELANO5
'Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Institute of Zoology, boul. Tzar Osvoboditel 1, 1000 Sofia, Bulgaria. 2Russian Academy of Sciences,
Institute of Zoology, Universitetskaya nab.l, 199034 St.Petersburg, Russia. 3 Universita degli Studi di Torino, Dipartimento di Biologia
Animale, via Accademia Albertina 17, 10123 Turin, Italy. 4Universita di Ancona, Istituto di Biologia e Genetica, via Raineri Monte
d'Ago, 60100 Ancona, Italy. 'Universita degli Studi di Torino, Dipartimento di Chimica Analitica, via P. Giuria 5, 10125 Turin, Italy.
Abstract — Genotoxic effect as tested of chronic exposure to three different concentrations
of Chromium (III) on polytene chromosomes of larvae of Chironomus
riparius (syn. Chironomus thummi) from the embryonic stage to the IV larval instar for
two successive generations. In chromosomes AB, CD, EF and G significant differences
of chromosome aberrations were found between exposed and control larvae
as well as changes in functional activity (induction of novel puffs not corresponding
to those induced during normal larval development in arms A, B, C and E,
telomeric and centromeric decondensations especially at telomeres of chromosome
G and arm C.). No significant differences were found between the effects of the three
treatments nor between the two generations. In chromosome G the Balbiani Ring
system (where some permanently active regions are involved in transcription of
salivary proteins) appeared as a model for studying the response of the genome to Cr
(III) treatment. In approximately one-third of the cells of the exposed larvae, the
activity of the Balbiani rings BRc and BRb was reversed. In 10% of the cells of both
generations of treated larvae, deletion or collapse of BRc was observed. Pomponlike
G chromosomes were present in 6% of the cells. This type of chromoosme
appeared either in a very decondesed or in a highly condensed state. In 5 % of the
treated larvae the apical region of the chromosome G folded back so that the
nucleolar organizer region appeared as if it was at the end of the chromosome.
These structural and functional chromosomal changes are interpreted as a reaction
of the genome to stressful rearing conditions.
CARYOLOGIA Vol. 54, no. 1: 73-81, 2001
Long-term starvation effects on Mus musculus hepatocyte nuclear phenotypes
R. P. MATEUS* and S. R. TABOGA
Department of Biology, IBILCE, UNESP, Sao Jose do Rio Preto - SP, Brazil.
Abstract — Starvation is a physiologic stress and can significantly alter the structure of
hepatic cells. This work aims to detect morphological changes in mice hepatocyte under
starvation physiologic stress, based on silver staining technique. Fourteen 21 day old male
mice (Mus musculus) were used, 5 as control, 5 submitted to 72 hours of starvation, and 4
were refed during 72 hours after 72 hours of starvation. After liver imprint, 15 nuclei per
mouse and their respective nucleoli were outlined in millimetric paper and their areas
were obtained. The results, in mm2, were transformed into mm2. The number of nucleoli
per nuclei were also counted. After starvation, a statistically significant rise in nuclear and
nucleolar areas occurred and no significant increase in the number of nucleoli was
observed. The refeeding caused a partial recovery of the nuclear area, no significant
change in the nucleolar area and a statistically significant increase in the number of nucleoli.
Therefore, starvation can be considered as a modifier agent of the chromatinic
structure, leading to an increase of the nuclear and nucleolar areas probably due to an
increment of RNA and protein synthesis. The recovery of the stress (re-feeding) did not
presented a decrease of nucleolar area and evidenced a nucleoli fragmentation, probably
to increase more the protein synthesis and/or due to its cycle during the interphase.
CARYOLOGIA Vol. 54, no. 1: 83-96, 2001
Cytogenetics of Adamanotus uncotibialis Jacobs (Heteroptera: Aradidae)
D. H. JACOBS and H. LIEBENBERG
1 Department of Zoology and Entomology, University of Pretoria, Pretoria 00022 ,D epartment of Genetics.University of Pretoria,
Pretoria, 0002, South Africa.
Abstract —The cytogenetics of Adamanotus uncotibialis (Aradidae, Carventinae)
with a chromosome number of 2n=16XY is described and figured. An idiogram of
the karyotype, based on chromosome area measurements by means of an image
analyzer, is presented and the method, its advantages and limitations is described
and discussed. A chiasma analysis of seven individuals is given and briefly discussed.
The occurrence of abnormal meiocytes (including malorientated chromosomes
and bivalents at metaphase I and II, laggards and late segregating chromosomes
at anaphase I and II, chromatid bridges at anaphase II and tetraploid and
unbalanced metaphase II cells) at a low frequency is reported and it is suggested
that they originate because of dicentric spindle attachment of the chromosomes.
CARYOLOGIA Vol. 54, no. 1: 97-101, 2001
Molecular analysis of Salamander family: the new alpine salamander Salamandra atra aurorae
AURORA PEDERZOLI*, PAOLA AZZONI and MAURO MANDRIOLI
Dipartimento di Biologia Animale, Universita degli Studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia, via Campi 213/d, 41100 Modena, Italy.
Abstract — A portion of the mitochondrial DNA from the 3' terminal of gene 12S
rRNA to the 5' extremity of 16S rRNA gene has been amplified by PCR from Salamandra
atra aurorae genomic DNA in order to define the taxonomic position of S.
atra aurorae within the Salamandra species. Analysis of the molecular data indicated
that S. a. aurorae is quite different from S. salamandra, whereas S. a. aurorae
and S. a. atra are more similar, although their mitochondrial DNA present several
mutations. Our analysis suggested therefore that S. a. aurorae could really represent
a new subspecies of alpine salamander. Finally, on the basis of the rate of sequence
divergence, we could suggest that S. a. atra and S. a. aurorae diverged about three
million years ago.