Isolated testes of the locust Schistocerca gregaria were immersed in solutions of tritiated thymidine, cytidine, uridine, or arginine for short periods to study nucleic acid and protein synthesis during spermatogenesis. DNA synthesis in this tissue is completed prior to initiation of meiosis. Protein synthesis continues throughout the whole meiotic cycle as well as during spermatid development. Meiotic cells, except those in metaphase through early telophase, and early spermatids are also actively synthesizing RNA. The heteropycnotic X-chromosome does not produce RNA at any stage of spermatogenesis. The rates of protein and particularly RNA synthesis decrease as chromosome condensation progresses. Depression of RNA synthesis, however, is not always accompanied by cytologically detectable condensation of chromatin, since very little or no RNA is synthesized in spermatids in which chromatin condensation has barely begun.

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