Letter | Published:

Regulation of cell size in fish of tetraploid origin


ALTHOUGH what precisely determines the characteristic size of the cell is still unknown its regulation must have been of enormous significance during evolution1,2. Bigger cells have a relatively lower metabolic rate than smaller ones so that the reduction of cell size is of adaptive value when changing environmental conditions requires an increase in metabolism and vice versa1,2. A decrease in cell size, however, must be accompanied by a corresponding loss of DNA if the nucleo–cytoplasmic relationship, which is fundamental in cell biology, is to be maintained.

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    Bachmann, K., Goin, O. B., and Goin, G. J., in Evolution of Genetic Systems (edit. by Smith, H. H.), 419–450 (Gordon and Breach, New York, 1972).

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    Schmidtke, J., and Engel, W., Biochem. Genet. (in the press).

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    Pedersen, R. A., J. exp. Zool., 177, 65–78 (1971).

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    Siegel, A., Lightfoot, D., Ward, O. G., and Keener, S., Science, 179, 682–683 (1973).

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