Journal of Molecular Evolution

, Volume 53, Issue 4–5, pp 430–435 | Cite as

Does Human mtDNA Recombine?

  • Adam  Eyre-Walker
  • Philip  Awadalla


In this article we review the evidence for and against recombination in human mtDNA. If recombination occurs, there needs to be a route by which genetic material can incorporate itself into the mitochondrial genome, and hence between mitochondrial lineages. We review the evidence for possible routes and then review the current state of the population genetic evidence for recombination. We conclude that there is no firmly established route by which recombination can occur, and that while some of the population genetic evidence is suggestive of recombination, it is far from conclusive.

Key words: Recombination — Mitochondria — Human genetics — Human evolution 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag New York Inc. 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Adam  Eyre-Walker
    • 1
  • Philip  Awadalla
    • 2
  1. 1.Centre for the Study of Evolution & School of Biological Sciences, University of Sussex, Brighton, BNI 9QG, United KingdomGB
  2. 2.Department of Zoology, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, V6T IZ4, CanadaCA

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