The Sau3A family is a human, clustered, highly repetitive, GC-rich DNA family. In situ hybridization studies with a plasmid carrying a Sau3A monomer as a probe have shown that Sau3A sequences are preferentially concentrated in the heterochromatic regions of human acrocentric chromosomes (D and G groups, both in pericentromeric regions and in cytological satellites) and in pericentromeric heterochromatin of chromosome 1. The same chromosomal locations were observed by using as probes two recombinant phages which carry Sau3A-positive genomic sectors. The two sectors differfor the relative proportions of monomer and multiples of Sau3A repeats, which show different extents of homology to the cloned monomer, and for the presence, in one of the two, of a samll amount of an unrelated repeat (alphoid DNA). The similarity of the results obtained with the three probes suggests that heterogeneous Sau3A repeats share the same chromosomal localizations and that the two analyzed genomic sectors may not contain significant amounts of repetitive DNAs other than the Sau3A family. A comparison between the chromosomal locations of Sau3A and EcoRI families of repeats has confirmed that each family is characterized by specific chromosomal locations and that single heterochromatic regions may contain both.
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