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Journal of Molecular Evolution

, Volume 47, Issue 6, pp 772–783 | Cite as

Phylogenetic Relationships Within the Genus Equus and the Evolution of α and θ Globin Genes

  • E. Ann  Oakenfull
  • John B.  Clegg

Abstract.

Sequences of the α1, α2 and θ globin genes from six equid species have been determined to investigate relationships within the genus Equus. Analyses using standard phylogenetic methods, or an approach designed to account for the effects of gene conversion between the α genes, gave broadly similar results and show that the horses diverged from the zebra/ass ancestor ∼2.4 million years ago and that the zebra and ass species arose in a rapid radiation ∼0.9 million years ago. These results from the α genes are corroborated by θ gene data and are in contrast to mitochondrial DNA studies of the phylogeny of this genus, which suggest a more gradual set of speciation events.

Key words:Equus—α and θ globin genes — Phylogeny — Gene conversion 

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • E. Ann  Oakenfull
    • 1
  • John B.  Clegg
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Molecular Medicine, University of Oxford, Oxford, UKGB

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