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Albinism is caused by an autosomal recessive allele of a single gene. An albino child is born to phenotypically normal parents. However, the paternal grandfather is albino. Exhaustive analysis suggests that neither the mother nor her ancestors carry the allele for albinism. Suggest a mechanism to explain this situation.

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Human Heredity: Principles and Iss...

11th Edition
Michael Cummings
Publisher: Cengage Learning
ISBN: 9781305251052

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BuyFindarrow_forward

Human Heredity: Principles and Iss...

11th Edition
Michael Cummings
Publisher: Cengage Learning
ISBN: 9781305251052
Chapter 6, Problem 25QP
Textbook Problem
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Albinism is caused by an autosomal recessive allele of a single gene. An albino child is born to phenotypically normal parents. However, the paternal grandfather is albino. Exhaustive analysis suggests that neither the mother nor her ancestors carry the allele for albinism. Suggest a mechanism to explain this situation.

Summary Introduction

To suggest: A mechanism to illustrate a situation that non-albino parents gave birth to an albino child provided that the paternal grandfather is albino.

Introduction: Complete or partial loss of melanin from a person’s eyes, skin or hair is indication of a disorder known as albinism. Albinism is a recessive trait which affects the eyesight and color of the body. People suffering from this disorder lack melanin or have less amount of melanin in the body.

Explanation of Solution

The probable reasons for birth of a child with albinism are:

  • The child could have monosomy for the chromosome responsible for causing albinism. This monosomy is possible if the child inherits chromosome only from heterozygous father and due to error such as non disjunction does not receive chromosome from homozygous mother.  Such a condition leads to autosomal monosomy which is lethal. This probability can be excluded.
  • There might be minute deletion in the chromosome received from mother leading to probable expression of gene responsible for albinism...

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