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Genetics question


Keith
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Lets say you start out with a colony of G. Portentosa with mixed individuals some orange-yellow some pure black. For next 4 or 5 generations you only breed black ones until no more orange-yellow individuals ever show up. Being these roaches have genetic material from the past relatives that were orange-yellow, is it possible a light individual could show up in otherwise 100% pure black stock, like a genetic throwback?

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If you have a population homozygous for a gene, and no other genes are involved, the only way you're going to get something different is a mutation.

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No. Sounds like.you bred the orange-yellow completely out. New spontanus mutations are fairly rare and non detrimental/ non lethal mutations are amazingly rare.

So what your saying is its possible but very,very rare, correct?

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So... color in insects is very complex. It's not a gene for color that you're attempting to change but rather multiple hormones (hormone pathways, rather) and enzymes that are involved in the actual structure of the cuticle and melaization that work together. Not impossible by any means, as it's been fairly reliably done in fruit flies (with all the gene loci mapped out for it), but if you want a true breeding reliable dark or black roach it will take a bit more work. It's not a simple matter of breeding homozygotes until you know more of the genetics behind it - what genes are more likely to sort with each other, and such.

Otherwise it's blind luck and you'll end up with regular (wild type) coloring from time to time. Of course, many years and a lot of generations later with very proactive culling could probably do it with little understanding of how it happens

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  • 4 weeks later...

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