A conserved segmental duplication within ELA. Academic Article uri icon


  • The assembled genomic sequence of the horse major histocompatibility complex (MHC) (equine lymphocyte antigen, ELA) is very similar to the homologous human HLA, with the notable exception of a large segmental duplication at the boundary of ELA class I and class III that is absent in HLA. The segmental duplication consists of a 710 kb region of at least 11 repeated blocks: 10 blocks each contain an MHC class I-like sequence and the helicase domain portion of a BAT1-like sequence, and the remaining unit contains the full-length BAT1 gene. Similar genomic features were found in other Perissodactyls, indicating an ancient origin, which is consistent with phylogenetic analyses. Reverse-transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR) of mRNA from peripheral white blood cells of healthy and chronically or acutely infected horses detected transcription from predicted open reading frames in several of the duplicated blocks. This duplication is not present in the sequenced MHCs of most other mammals, although a similar feature at the same relative position is present in the feline MHC (FLA). Striking sequence conservation throughout Perissodactyl evolution is consistent with a functional role for at least some of the genes included within this segmental duplication.

published proceedings

  • Anim Genet

author list (cited authors)

  • Brinkmeyer-Langford, C. L., Murphy, W. J., Childers, C. P., & Skow, L. C.

citation count

  • 7

complete list of authors

  • Brinkmeyer-Langford, CL||Murphy, WJ||Childers, CP||Skow, LC

publication date

  • January 2010