Immunogenetics

, Volume 57, Issue 1, pp 16–24

Patterns of variability at the major histocompatibility class II alpha locus in Atlantic salmon contrast with those at the class I locus

  • S. Consuegra
  • H. J. Megens
  • K. Leon
  • R. J. M. Stet
  • W. C. Jordan
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s00251-004-0765-z

Cite this article as:
Consuegra, S., Megens, H.J., Leon, K. et al. Immunogenetics (2005) 57: 16. doi:10.1007/s00251-004-0765-z
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Abstract

In order to investigate the mechanisms creating and maintaining variability at the major histocompatibility (MH) class II alpha (DAA) locus we examined patterns of polymorphism in two isolated Atlantic salmon populations which share a common post-glacial origin. As expected from their common origin, but contrary to the observation at the MH class I locus, these populations shared the majority of DAA alleles: out of 17 sequences observed, 11 were common to both populations. Recombination seems to play a more important role in the origin of new alleles at the class II alpha locus than at the class I locus. A greater than expected proportion of sites inferred to be positively selected (potentially peptide binding residues, PBRs) were found to be involved in recombination events, suggesting a mechanism for increasing MH variability through an interaction between recombination and natural selection. Thus it appears that although selection and recombination are important mechanisms for the evolution of both class II alpha and class I loci in the Atlantic salmon, the pattern of variability differs markedly between these classes of MH loci.

Keywords

MHC Class II alpha Recombination Natural selection Atlantic salmon 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. Consuegra
    • 1
    • 2
  • H. J. Megens
    • 3
  • K. Leon
    • 3
  • R. J. M. Stet
    • 3
    • 4
  • W. C. Jordan
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of ZoologyZoological Society of LondonLondon NW1 4RYUK
  2. 2.Present address: Fish Muscle Research Group, Gatty Marine LaboratoryUniversity of St AndrewsSt. Andrews, Fife KY16 8LBUK
  3. 3.Cell Biology and Immunology Group, Department of Animal SciencesWageningen UniversityPG WageningenThe Netherlands
  4. 4.Present address: Scottish Fish Immunology Research CentreUniversity of AberdeenAberdeenScotland, UK

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