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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Unaltered meiotic chromosome segregation in Drosophila melanogaster raised on a 5% quercetin diet.

Flavonoid plant pigments are an integral part of the human diet. Although potentially negative mitotic effects of flavonoids have been observed in model organisms, investigation into meiotic effects of flavonoids has been neglected. As flavonoids affect cell signalling and DNA replication, and because the flavonoid content of the human food supply is being increased, determining the effects of flavonoids on meiotic fidelity is important. Here, the effect of the human food supply's most prevalent flavonoid, quercetin, on the level of meiotic recombination and the amount of X and 4th chromosome non-disjunction in Drosophila melanogaster females was determined. This model organism was chosen since Drosophila melanogaster and Homo sapiens share a remarkable number of commonalities in the meiotic processes of oogenesis and because genetic techniques allow a detailed analysis of meiotic processes in Drosophila. No significant effect on either non-disjunction levels or the percentage distribution of exchange bivalents was observed. A significant effect was observed on the number of offspring; F1 and F2 generations of flies raised on a quercetin diet produced over 10% more progeny than flies raised on a control diet. In this investigation, high quercetin consumption by Drosophila melanogaster females did not pose a threat to meiotic fidelity.[1]


  1. Unaltered meiotic chromosome segregation in Drosophila melanogaster raised on a 5% quercetin diet. Schramm, D.D., Collins, H.E., Hawley, R.S., German, J.B. Food Chem. Toxicol. (1998) [Pubmed]
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