Methods in Molecular Biology 990: 13-24.
Chromosome painting (CP) refers to visualization of large chromosome regions, entire chromosome arms, or entire chromosomes via fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). For CP in plants, contigs of chromosome-specific bacterial artificial chromosomes (BAC) from the target species or from a closely related species (comparative chromosome painting, CCP) are typically applied as painting probes. Extended pachytene chromosomes provide the highest resolution of CP in plants. CP enables identification and tracing of particular chromosome regions and/or entire chromosomes throughout all meiotic stages as well as corresponding chromosome territories in premeiotic interphase nuclei. Meiotic pairing and structural chromosome rearrangements (typically inversions and translocations) can be identified by CP. Here, we describe step-by-step protocols of CP and CCP in plant species including chromosome preparation, BAC DNA labeling, and multicolor FISH.