Current Genetics

, Volume 39, Issue 3, pp 198–203 | Cite as

Mitochondrial control region structure and single site heteroplasmy in the razorbill (Alca torda; Aves)

  • Truls Moum
  • Ingrid Bakke
Original Paper


The primary structure of the Alca torda mitochondrial control region was determined and conserved structural features were identified based on sequence comparisons to other bird species. In a population survey using control region analysis, five individuals were found to possess heteroplasmic point mutations at the variable 5′ end of the control region. The pattern of variable nucleotide positions among individuals was compared to the distribution of heteroplasmic sites and the heteroplasmic condition was further characterised by a cloning procedure applied to two individuals which harboured one and two heteroplasmic point mutations, respectively. These results are in support of recent evidence that single site heteroplasmy may be more common than previously thought.

Heteroplasmy Mitochondrial DNA Control region Razorbill 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Truls Moum
    • 1
  • Ingrid Bakke
    • 2
  1. 1.Norwegian Institute for Nature Research, Polar Environmental Centre, 9296 Tromsø, Norway
  2. 2.Department of Molecular Biotechnology, Institute of Medical Biology, University of Tromsø, 9037 Tromsø, Norway

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