The impact of the Y chromosome on the reproductive fitness of male wild-derived mice


Keona Banks

Document Type


Publication Date

Summer 2023



JAX Location

In: Student Reports, Summer 2023, The Jackson Laboratory


Reproductive fitness is defined as the number of offspring produced over an individual’s lifespan. The mammalian Y chromosome contains genes that are involved in various reproductive functions, including sex determination, testis development and the maintenance of spermatogenesis, but little is known about the impact of the Y chromosome on male reproductive fitness. For this project, four genetically diverse wild-derived inbred strains of mice were crossed to create 4-way F2 mice, and then various reproductive outcomes were measured from more than 300 independent F2xF2 crosses. For each breeder pair, the Y chromosome origin was known from recorded parentage, and this information was analyzed using ANOVA tests to determine if the Y chromosome influences various reproductive outcomes. The percentage of offspring which were male, the number of days it took for the pair to produce 12 pups, and the number of litters needed to produce 12 pups were all affected (P<0.05) by Y chromosome strain origin. These results indicate that the Y chromosome likely impacts breeding performance in male house mice.

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