FISH-detected delay in replication timing of mutated FMR1 alleles on both active and inactive X-chromosomes

Josepha Yeshaya, Ruth Shalgi, Mordechai Shohat, Lydia Avivi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


X-chromosome inactivation and the size of the CGG repeat number are assumed to play a role in the clinical, physical, and behavioral phenotype of female carriers of a mutated FMR1 allele. In view of the tight relationship between replication timing and the expression of a given DNA sequence, we have examined the replication timing of FMR1 alleles on active and inactive X-chromosomes in cell samples (lymphocytes or amniocytes) of 25 females: 17 heterozygous for a mutated FMR1 allele with a trinucleotide repeat number varying from 58 to a few hundred, and eight homozygous for a wild-type allele. We have applied two-color fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) with FMR1 and X-chromosome α-satellite probes to interphase cells of the various genotypes: the α-satellite probe was used to distinguish between early replicating (active) and late replicating (inactive) X-chromosomes, and the FMR1 probe revealed the replication pattern of this locus. All samples, except one with a large trinucleotide expansion, showed an early replicating FMR1 allele on the active X-chromosome and a late replicating allele on the inactive X-chromosome. In samples of mutation carriers, both the early and the late alleles showed delayed replication compared with normal alleles, regardless of repeat size. We conclude therefore that: (1) the FMR1 locus is subjected to X-inactivation; (2) mutated FMR1 alleles, regardless of repeat size, replicate later than wild-type alleles on both the active and inactive X-chromosomes; and (3) the delaying effect of the trinucleotide expansion, even with a low repeat size, is superimposed on the delay in replication associated with X-inactivation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)86-97
Number of pages12
JournalHuman Genetics
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 1999


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