Molecular characteristics of the MHC-DRA genes from yak (Bos grunniens) and Chinese yakow (Bos grunniens × Bos taurus)



Two full-length cDNAs (762 bp) of the DRA gene from yak and Chinese yakow were isolated and analysed to identify structural and functional variations. The sequences for DRA in yak (Bogr-DRA) and Chinese yakow (Bogr × BoLA-DRA) were essentially identical to those for cattle (99%) and buffalo (97%). Except for two substitutions in the amino acids comprising the domain for signal peptide (SP) in yak, the additional residues were highly conserved across the species investigated. Peptide-binding site (PBS) of Bogr-DRA and Bogr × BoLA-DRA was highly reserved in the α1 domain among all species investigated. The lack of mutation in Bogr-DRA is consistent with the conception that the gene is highly conserved among all mammalian species. The very high conservation of the DRA gene among ruminants, including yak, may be due to its recent evolutionary detachment.