Chromosome landmarks as tools to study the genome of Arabidopsis thaliana
The model plant Arabidopsis thaliana has long been used for genetic, cellular and molecular studies. Whereas this plant was used as a model of genetics in the 1940' s, the first cytogenetic observation of A. thaliana chromosomes was published in the beginning of the 20th century. Although Arabidopsis was not originally considered to be a good plant model for cytogenetics due to smallness of its genome, the number of published chromosome studies has expanded enormously in recent years. The advent of fluorescence in situ hybridization techniques on meiotic chromosomes together with indirect immuno-fluorescence localization of key chromosomal and nuclear proteins and wide accessibility of Arabidopsis mutants have resulted in a synergistic boost in Arabidopsis cytogenetics. In comparison to other plant species, the small genome with under-represented DNA repeats together with a small number of chromosomes makes this model plant easy to comprehend for a cytologist. Copyright (c) 2008 S. Karger AG, Basel.