The Y chromosome is a symbol of maleness, present only in males and encoding genes important for male reproduction. But live mouse offspring can be generated with assisted reproduction using germ cells from males with the Y chromosome contribution limited to only two genes: the testis determinant factor Sry and the spermatogonial proliferation factor Eif2s3y .
Because the overall efficiency of ROSI with two Y genes was lower than with regular, fertile mice, the researchers then looked to see whether the addition of other Y genes could improve it.
"Most of the mouse Y chromosome genes are necessary for normal fertilization," Ward said. It may be possible to eliminate the mouse Y chromosome altogether if appropriate replacements are made for those two genes.
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