Transmission ratio distortion in the human body louse, Pediculus humanus (Insecta: Phthiraptera)

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2006
Authors:C. J. McMeniman, Barker S. C.
Pagination:63 - 68
Date Published:2006
ISBN Number:0018-067X

We studied inheritance at three microsatellite loci in eight F(1) and two F(2) families of the body (clothes) louse of humans, Pediculus humanus. The alleles of heterozygous female-parents were always inherited in a Mendelian fashion in these families. Alleles from heterozygous male-parents, however, were inherited in two different ways: (i) in a Mendelian fashion and (ii) in a non-Mendelian fashion, where males passed to their offspring only one of their two alleles, that is, 100% nonrandom transmission. In male body lice, where there was non-Mendelian inheritance, the paternally inherited set of alleles was eliminated. We interpret this pattern of inheritance as evidence for extreme transmission ratio distortion of paternal alleles in this species.Heredity advance online publication, 21 September 2005; doi:10.1038/sj.hdy.6800760.

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