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Science. 2006 Jul 7;313(5783):62.

Nuclear gene indicates coat-color polymorphism in mammoths.

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  • 1Molecular Biochemistry, Institute of Biochemistry, Medical Faculty, University of Leipzig, 04103 Leipzig, Germany.

Abstract

By amplifying the melanocortin type 1 receptor from the woolly mammoth, we can report the complete nucleotide sequence of a nuclear-encoded gene from an extinct species. We found two alleles and show that one allele produces a functional protein whereas the other one encodes a protein with strongly reduced activity. This finding suggests that mammoths may have been polymorphic in coat color, with both dark- and light-haired individuals co-occurring.

PMID:
16825562
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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