A group of scientists from Austria and Germany analyzed the genome of cats that belong to the breed Selkirk Rex, and found that the gene that determines characteristic of this breed concern curliness wool localized. Report on the work they published in the Journal of Heredity, extracts from which leads the Veterinary Institute in Vienna on their site vu-wien.ac.at.
The authors have studied the pedigrees of more than 150 animals, and some of them taken DNA samples. Then the researchers compared the marker bits and owned cats Selkirk Rex, with samples taken from other breeds. In the end, the greatest proximity to the curly cats installed in Persian, British and exotic Shorthair varieties of animals.
The analysis revealed that nine generations earlier one asexual chromosome (autosome) one kitten occurred a spontaneous mutation that affected the curl of hair.
The nature of inheritance of the mutation locus, named by scientists SADRE, became dominant, that is, its manifestation was possible even if the genome was present second, neotantra copy of the gene. This helped quite fast, if you count the occurrence of mutations in 1987, obtaining a new breed with a distinctive appearance.
Considering how many copies there are of the mutated gene, there are two varieties of cats Selkirk Rex - Homo - and heterozygous. While curly hair occurs in both species with small differences in the shape of the ears and head.
Prior to this, another group of researchers found that the mutation Taqpep gene encoding transmembrane protease, contributed to the development of patchy staining, characteristic of certain breeds of domestic cats, but in the wild rarely encountered.