Journal of Molecular Evolution

, Volume 87, Issue 2–3, pp 106–130 | Cite as

Visualization of Genetic Drift Processes Using the Conserved Collagen 1α1 GXY Domain

  • Anne J. KleinnijenhuisEmail author
Original Article


Speciation proceeds by the accumulation of DNA differences in time. The genetic code changes as a result of genetic drift and by selective pressure. In variable domains, exposure to high selective pressure obscures the view on background mutations. Therefore, we characterized and visualized background mutations using the highly conserved collagen 1α1 GXY domain. Typical change routes were identified and the data set showed several indications that changes in the collagen 1α1 GXY domain have taken place randomly within a functionally restricted space. The types of nucleotide and codon group differences are similar across the vertebrate subphylum and gradually become less functionally neutral with increasing distance between species, which offers the opportunity for rapid visualization of evolutionary relations using a single domain. It was concluded that the findings and approach of the study could be important for analytical method development in authenticity research, especially when conserved domains are targeted.


Genetic drift Collagen 1α1 Molecular evolution Coding DNA Authenticity Functional restriction 



The study was a sequel to a previous proteogenomic study (Kleinnijenhuis and van Holthoon 2018) and was financed by Triskelion.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The author declares no conflicts of interest. The work was financed by Triskelion.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.TriskelionZeistThe Netherlands

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