y3 and al1 are pale yellow endosperm/albescent seedling mutants that map to the same region of the short arm of chromosome 2 (Perry and Sprague, J. Amer. Soc. Agron. 28:990-996, 1936). For many years they have been listed as separate, tightly linked loci, with y3 conditioning the pale yellow endosperm phenotype and al1 conditioning the albescent seedling phenotype. However, these two traits have never been unambiguously separated by crossing over, and the possibility remains that y3/al1 is a single gene with pleiotropic effects. In order to investigate this possibility, crosses were made in the Maize COOP's summer 1994 nursery between two sources of y3 (tracing back to G. F. Sprague and E. A. Graner, respectively) and an al1 allele (al1-Brawn; Robertson, J. Hered. 66:67-74, 1975) obtained from D. S. Robertson. All crosses between y3 and al1-Brawn produced pale yellow endosperm kernels which when planted in the sand bench gave rise to albescent seedlings. The likelihood of both the y3 and the al1-Brawn stocks independently carrying the same two tightly linked mutants is very low. Thus, the two mutants are almost certainly alleles at the same locus. Since al1 has precedence in the literature, it is suggested that the gene symbol al1 be retained for the locus, and that y3 be named al1-y3.
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