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Re: One in 10,000


Think you missed my point.  I clearly did not bother to define terms well,
but was merely stating that typical nuclear DNA mutations occur in the range
of 1 in a million individual offspring produced.  I was estimating that the
change from an all green (or gold) individual to variegated occurs closer to
1 in 10,000 individual offspring produced.  Both Ran and Joe clearly think
that the number is lower, maybe 1 in 1,000?  At any rate, we can not explain
Hosta sports by simple nuclear mutations using either my estimate or Ran's.

I think that Joe and I were exploring another nuclear mechanism of movable
genes, where the numbers can be in the thousands instead of millions.  It
may be that color sports in Hosta have nothing to do with nuclear regulation
or movable genes, but both Joe and I thought it profitable to explore the
possibility.  By the way, Ben thinks that we both are all wet, so we are not
accepting any theory presented by him.

I am again being the skeptic in not just accepting the idea of chloroplast
sorting into specific tissues.  However, you may be right.  I have not read
all the literature.   My main stumbling block is how the initial sorting is
done in the Zygote so that you get a variegated seedling and how does this
sorting relate to the maternal tissue being streaked.   What makes one type
of chloroplast go preferentially into one cell and another type of
chloroplast  go in another cell when initially they are all mixed together
in the zygote cell?  A mechanism that entails nuclear regulation of
chlorophyll synthesis (or chloroplast development) is much easier to

You ask what difference does it make what the mechanism is.  Well Jim, what
difference does anything make.  I am curious, and that is sufficient.

Jim Anderson

-----Original Message-----
From: Jim Hawes <hawesj@gcnet.net>
To: hosta-open@mallorn.com <hosta-open@mallorn.com>; hawesj@gcnet.net
Date: Sunday, August 15, 1999 7:53 PM
Subject: One in 10,000

>Ran Lydell says at 12:04 Sunday that one sport in 10,000 is simply at
>odds with the facts.( I think he was saying it was too high?? )
>Joe Halinar says at 9:27 Sunday that there is a vast difference between
>the general notion that Hosta color sports occur at the rate  of one in
>10,000 and reality. He goes on to attribute high rates of sporting to
>the unstable (unsettled ) nature of new plant material which has not
>stood the test of time to observe their true growth characterisitics (of
>juvenility and maturity?) .
>On Saturday  at 9:00, Jim Anderson started all of this off by stating
>that mutations occur in the range of 1 in a million individuals...and
>that he sees green to variegated (sports?)  in numbers closer to 1 in
>10,000. So how do we resolve these differences in the range of 100 fold
>off assumed rates of mutations to explain the high rates of sports in
>hostas? .
>Jim Hawes says first we must define our terms. Then we make our
>assumptions about what it is we are talking about. Jim Anderson
>mentioned "individuals"...but he didn't say whether these individuals
>were plastids, cells,  primordial buds in the axils of primordial leaves
>on the meristem or propagules which had new characteristics...thus a
>sport. Nor were mutations defined in the assumptions necessary for an
>intelligent discussion. Problem is, there were no assumption made at all
>that I saw. Were these mutations mentioned of DNA in chromosomes in the
>nucleus or were they mutations in the DNA of plastids in the cytoplasm
>of cells? Since Jim A. asked Ben,  whose theories for causal factors for
>sports do not correspond with conventional wisdom anyway ( see my post
>to hosta-open  of May 24, 1999 which represents a critique of Ben's
>funny article in Journal 30.1),  why are we waisting time discussing
>this weak foundationless discussion?
>Individual plastids which may sport and sort out into heteroplastidic
>cells  and then create color sports are certainly within the range of
>producing 1 in 10,000 sports of a given population. If we are talking
>about individual cells which may sport, the same conclusion can be
>reached to create one in 10,000 individuals  which may have mutated
>plastids . Those individual cells could grow and differentiate into one
>in 10,000 primordial buds which could theoretically sprout and grow
>into  1 in 10,000 shoots which are sports from the original parent
>meristem. This example is to show how weak the basis for the discussion
>really is.
>I ask a further question , does it matter anyway? If we have recognized
>that hostas are unique in that they sport very frequently, do we need to
>know the causes? And the frequencies? But if you really want to know the
>causes, don't ask Ben. His theories are incomplete and are not backed up
>by anything but his own statements.
>The answer is in the plastids as I have been trying to explain. I
>justify my opinion on the statements of Dr. Michael Marcotrigiano, a
>world authority on variegation in plants.Read his works and become
>enlightened.Also read Kevin Vaughn in Bulletin 11...he says the same
>Jim Hawes.
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