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A "disproportion" between the frequency of rare electropmorphs and enzyme deficiency variants in Amerindians.

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PMC
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  • Research Article
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  • Biology

Abstract

Our previous studies have revealed a higher frequency of nonpolymorphic electrophoretic variants in blood samples from Amerindians than in similar samples from Caucasians and Japanese. Our present study finds, by contrast, that the frequency of deficiency variants of 11 erythrocyte enzymes, sampled in nine Amerindian tribes of Central and South America, is essentially the same (1.5/1,000 determinations) as in Caucasians or Japanese. Possible explanations of the elevated frequency of mobility variants in the tropical-zone/ unacculturated populations include: higher mutation rates resulting in both electrophoretic and activity variants in Amerindians but increased selection against deficiency variants in the Amerindians, or comparable mutation rates in both populations coupled with a greater probability of a mobility variant attaining a relatively high frequency among the Amerindians.

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