Mitochondrial DNA sequence diversity in extant Irish horse populations and in ancient horses

Authors

  • A. M. McGahern,

    1. Animal Genomics Laboratory, School of Agriculture, Food Science and Veterinary Medicine, College of Life Sciences, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland
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  • C. J. Edwards,

    1. Smurfit Institute of Genetics, Trinity College, Dublin 2, Ireland
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  • M. A. Bower,

    1. McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, Downing Street, Cambridge, CB2 3ER, UK
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  • A. Heffernan,

    1. Weatherbys Ireland Laboratory, c/o The Irish Equine Centre, Johnstown, Naas, Co. Kildare, Ireland
    2. School of Biology and Environmental Science, College of Life Sciences, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland
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  • S. D. E. Park,

    1. Animal Genomics Laboratory, School of Agriculture, Food Science and Veterinary Medicine, College of Life Sciences, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland
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  • P. O. Brophy,

    1. Animal Genomics Laboratory, School of Agriculture, Food Science and Veterinary Medicine, College of Life Sciences, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland
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  • D. G. Bradley,

    1. Smurfit Institute of Genetics, Trinity College, Dublin 2, Ireland
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  • D. E. MacHugh,

    1. Animal Genomics Laboratory, School of Agriculture, Food Science and Veterinary Medicine, College of Life Sciences, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland
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  • E. W. Hill

    1. Animal Genomics Laboratory, School of Agriculture, Food Science and Veterinary Medicine, College of Life Sciences, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland
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E. W. Hill, Animal Genomics Laboratory, School of Agriculture, Food Science and Veterinary Medicine, College of Life Sciences, University College Dublin, Belfield, Dublin 4, Ireland.
E-mail: emmeline.hill@ucd.ie

Summary

Equine mitochondrial DNA sequence variation was investigated in three indigenous Irish horse populations (Irish Draught Horse, Kerry Bog Pony and Connemara Pony) and, for context, in 69 other horse populations. There was no evidence of Irish Draught Horse or Connemara Pony sequence clustering, although the majority of Irish Draught Horse sequences (47%) were assigned to haplogroup D. Conversely, 31% of the Kerry Bog Pony sequences were assigned to the rare haplogroup E. In addition to the extant population analyses, ancient DNA sequences were generated from three out of four Irish archaeological specimens, all of which were assigned to haplogroup A.

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