During meiosis I in males of the mole cricket Neocurtilla (Gryllotalpa) hexadactyla, the univalent X1 chromosome and the heteromorphic X2Y chromosome pair segregate nonrandomly; the X1 and X2 chromosomes move to the same pole in anaphase. By means of ultrastructural analysis of serial sections of cells in several stages of meiosis I, metaphase of meiosis II, and mitosis, we found that the kinetochore region of two of the three nonrandomly segregating chromosomes differ from autosomal kinetochores only during meiosis I. The distinction is most pronounced at metaphase I when massive aggregates of electron-dense substance mark the kinetochores of X1 and Y chromosomes. The lateral position of the kinetochores of X1 and Y chromosomes and the association of these chromosomes with microtubules running toward both poles are also characteristic of meiosis I and further distinguish X1 and Y from the autosomes. Nonrandomly segregating chromosomes are typically positioned within the spindle so that the kinetochoric sides of the X2Y pair and the X1 chromosome are both turned toward the same interpolar spindle axis. This spatial relationship may be a result of a linkage of X1 and Y chromosomes lying in opposite half spindles via a small bundle of microtubules that runs between their unusual kinetochores. Thus, nonrandom segregation in Neocurtilla hexadactyla involves a unique modification at the kinetochores of particular chromosomes, which presumably affects the manner in which these chromosomes are integrated within the spindle.

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