Random quote about non-coding DNA.

I’m not making this officially part of the Quotes of Interest series, but I came across it while reading some papers yesterday and thought it worthy of note.

“Since the sequence composition of satellite DNA is remarkably heterogeneous in most organisms, and since its phenotypic or evolutionary function is not yet clear, satellite DNA is often called “selfish DNA” or “parasitic DNA” (Doolittle and Sapienza, 1980; Orgel and Crick, 1980). There is, however, accumulating evidence that such DNA sometimes contains functional DNA…”

This is a fairly standard introduction for a paper, and can be found in many recent articles announcing the end of a long period of neglect of “junk DNA” or “selfish DNA”.

Just one thing. This was published in 1991.


Imai, H.T. 1991. Mutability of constitutive heterochromatin (C-bands) during eukaryotic chromosomal evolution and their cytological meaning. Japanese Journal of Genetics 66: 635-661.