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Title: Allelic recombination between distinct genomic locations generates copy number diversity in human beta-defensins.
Authors: Abu Bakar S
Hollox, EJ
Armour, JA
First Published: 20-Jan-2009
Citation: PROC NATL ACAD SCI U S A, 2009, 106 (3), pp. 853-858
Abstract: Beta-defensins are small secreted antimicrobial and signaling peptides involved in the innate immune response of vertebrates. In humans, a cluster of at least 7 of these genes shows extensive copy number variation, with a diploid copy number commonly ranging between 2 and 7. Using a genetic mapping approach, we show that this cluster is at not 1 but 2 distinct genomic loci approximately 5 Mb apart on chromosome band 8p23.1, contradicting the most recent genome assembly. We also demonstrate that the predominant mechanism of change in beta-defensin copy number is simple allelic recombination occurring in the interval between the 2 distinct genomic loci for these genes. In 416 meiotic transmissions, we observe 3 events creating a haplotype copy number not found in the parent, equivalent to a germ-line rate of copy number change of approximately 0.7% per gamete. This places it among the fastest-changing copy number variants currently known.
DOI Link: 10.1073/pnas.0809073106
eISSN: 1091-6490
Type: Journal Article
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, Dept. of Genetics

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