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Brazilian Journal of Genetics

versión On-line ISSN 1678-4502


Preparation of mitotic chromosomes of leaf-cutting ants from the genera Atta and Acromyrmex. Braz. J. Genet. [online]. 1997, vol.20, n.1 ISSN 1678-4502.

Some modifications were made to the methodology of Imai et al. (Jpn. J. Genet. 63: 159-185, 1988) for cytogenetic analysis of the leaf-cutting ants Atta sexdens piriventris and Acromyrmex heyeri (Hymenoptera, Formicidae), shortening preparation time and improving chromosomal preparations. The brain ganglia of prepupae were dissected in a 0.0025% hypotonic solution of colchicine, placed on a glass slide on a cold plate (4 ± 1oC) for 20 min. The material was fixed directly on the cold slide (with cold fixative I), macerated with a histological needle and fixed again with fixative I, followed by fixatives II and III, all of them cold. The slide was flame-dried right after the use of fixative III, and it was allowed to air-dry at room temperature for 2 h. The resulting metaphases presented less contracted chromosomes, with separated and well defined sister chromatids at a high frequency, when the material was processed in the manner described and stained with 3% Giemsa in phosphate buffer (pH 6.8) for 15 min.

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