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Possible Duplication of Haemoglobin α-Chain Locus in the Irus Macaque


THE irus macaque (Macaca irus) is polymorphic for a minor haemoglobin component which resembles human Hb-A2 in electrophoretic mobility and concentration but differs from it in having a common β-chain with the normal major component, Hb-Ami (ref. 1). Two major haemoglobin variants Hb-Pmi and Hb-Qmi are also frequent in this species and these also differ from Hb-Ami in their α-chains. Some animals carry three haemoglobins, for example Hb-PmiPmi2βAmi2), Hb-AmiAmi2βAmi2) and the minor component (αXmi2βAmi2), and therefore have three types of α-chain (αAmi, αPmi and αXmi). Hb-Pmi and Hb-Ami are probably deteimined by allelic genes. It was therefore suggested1 that the minor component arose by duplication of the α-locus in a manner analogous to the proposed origin of Hb-A2 by a β-locus duplication2.

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WADE, P., BARNICOT, N. & HUEHNS, E. Possible Duplication of Haemoglobin α-Chain Locus in the Irus Macaque. Nature 215, 1485–1487 (1967).

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