Mahlon G. Kelly (mgk at darwin.clas.Virginia.EDU) wrote:
: Re. feline genetics. I have noticed that a cross betwen a tabby
: and a pure-bred siamese will produce more than 1/2 50% pure
: black kittens, and they preserve their black pigmentation until
: old age, when a few white hairs and white wiskwas (cat spelling
: for vibrisae) will appear.
: Several vets have confirmed that they have seen the same.
: Purebred Siamese breeders deny it. "MY cats breed with a tabby?
: Don't be ridiculous". At any rate, is there any genetic basis
: for this?
The "Siamese" coloration pattern is due to a temperature-sensitive
allele in a black-pigment locus -- cooler parts of the body
turn black, but in warm regions it doesn't function and hence
you get white. In a cross with a pure-bred black cat
I would expect 100% black kittens -- the black trait should
A good book on cat genetics would be a joy indeed!
(since I like both cats and genetics)
Department of Cellular and Developmental Biology
Department of Genetics / HHMI
robison at mito.harvard.edu