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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Evolutionary origin and diversification of the mammalian CD1 antigen genes.

CD1 antigens are cell-surface glycoproteins which have a molecular structure which is similar (consisting of extracellular domains alpha 1, alpha 2, and alpha 3, a transmembrane portion, and a cytoplasmic tail) to that of class I MHC molecules. Phylogenetic analysis of mammalian CD1 DNA sequences revealed that these genes are more closely related to the class I major histocompatibility complex (MHC) than to the class II MHC and that mammalian genes are more closely related to avian class I MHC genes than they are to mammalian class I MHC genes. The CD1 genes form a multigene family with different numbers of genes in different species (five in human, eight in rabbit, and two in mouse). Known CD1 genes are grouped into the following three families, on the basis of evolutionary relationship: (1) the human HCD1B gene and a partial sequence from the domestic rabbit, (2) the human HCD1A and HCD1C genes, and (3) the human HCD1D and HCD1E genes plus the two mouse genes and a sequence from the cottontail rabbit. The alpha 1 and alpha 2 domains of CD1 are much less conserved at the amino acid level than are the corresponding domains of class I MHC molecules, but the alpha 3 domain of CD1 seems to be still more conserved than the well-conserved alpha 3 domain of class I MHC molecules. Furthermore, in the human CD1 gene family, interlocus exon exchange has homogenized alpha 3 domains of all CD1 genes except HCD1C.[1]


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