A new family of interspersed repetitive DNA sequences in the mouse genome

Wolfgang Gebhard, Thomas Meitinger, Josef Höchtl, Hans G. Zachau

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Repetitive DNA sequences near immunoglobulin genes in the mouse genome (Steinmetz et al., 1980a,b) were characterized by restriction mapping and hybridization. Six sequences were determined that turned out to belong to a new family of dispersed repetitive DNA. From the sequences, which are called R1 to R6, a 475 base-pair consensus sequence was derived. The R family is clearly distinct from the mouse B1 family (Krayev et al., 1980). According to saturation hybridization experiments, there are about 100,000 R sequences per haploid genome, and they are probably distributed throughout the genome. The individual R sequences have an average divergence from the consensus sequence of 12.5%, which is largely due to point mutations and, among those, to transitions. Some R sequences are severly truncated. The R sequences extend into A-rich sequences and are flanked by short direct repeats. Also, two large insertions in the R2 sequence are flanked by direct repeats. In the neighbourhood of and within R sequences, stretches of DNA have been identified that are homologous to parts of small nuclear RNA sequences. Mouse satellite DNA-like sequences and members of the B1 family were also found in close proximity to the R sequences. The dispersion of R sequences within the mouse genome may be a consequence of transposition events. The possible role of the R sequences in recombination and/or gene conversion processes is discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)453-471
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Molecular Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 25 May 1982
Externally publishedYes


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