Genetic Chaos

Wednesday, May 12, 2004

A polymorphic L1 retroposon insertion in the centromere of the human Y chromosome

We have identified a novel polymorphic L1 retroposon insertion, designated LY1, in the centromeric alphoid array of the human Y chromosome. The element belongs to the transpositionally active Ta subset and its presence is compatible with normal centromere function. It was found at highest frequency in China, where it accounts for 23% of the Han sample, and was present at low frequencies in the surrounding areas, but was not found at all outside Asia. Chromosomes carrying LY1 show considerable microsatellite diversity, suggesting an ancient origin for the lineage at approximately 10 000 years ago (with wide confidence limits), but only limited subsequent migration.

PDF file