Serological data identify a single major histocompatibility complex (MHC) class I locus in cattle. Molecular data, however, demonstrate the presence of at least two cattle MHC (BoLA) class I loci. To investigate the number of transcribed BoLA class I genes, we amplified cattle cDNA by using a single MHC class I-specific primer that hybridized to a conserved region of exon 4 and a non-specific 3′ primer. Six BoLA class I cDNAs have been cloned and sequenced from a Bos taurus bull heterozygous for BoLA class I serological antigens, demonstrating the presence of a minimum of three loci. Sequence comparisons suggested that one of these cDNAs may be an unexpressed allele or the product of a nonclassical locus.
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