Studies of Y Chromosome evolution have focused primarily on gene decay, a consequence of suppression of crossing-over with the X Chromosome. Here, we provide evidence that suppression of X–Y crossing-over unleashed a second dynamic: selfish X–Y arms races that reshaped the sex chromosomes in mammals as different as cattle, mice, and men. Using super-resolution sequencing, we explore the Y Chromosome of Bos taurus (bull) and find it to be dominated by massive, lineage-specific amplification of testis-expressed gene families, making it the most gene-dense Y Chromosome sequenced to date. As in mice, an X-linked homolog of a bull Y-amplified gene has become testis-specific and amplified. This evolutionary convergence implies that lineage-specific X–Y coevolution through gene amplification, and the selfish forces underlying this phenomenon, were dominatingly powerful among diverse mammalian lineages. Together with Y gene decay, X–Y arms races molded mammalian sex chromosomes and influenced the course of mammalian evolution.
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