Specific polymorphisms in the endoplasmic reticulum amino peptidase genes ERAP1 and ERAP2, when present with certain MHC class receptor types, have been associated with increased risk for specific cancers, infectious diseases and autoimmune disorders in humans. This increased risk has been linked to distinct polymorphisms in both ERAPs and MHC class I receptors that affect the way cell-generated peptides are screened for antigenicity. The incidence of cancer, infectious disease and autoimmune disorders differ greatly among pure breeds of dogs as it does in humans and it is possible that this heightened susceptibility is also due to specific polymorphisms in ERAP1 and ERAP2. In order to determine if such polymorphisms exist, the ERAP1 and ERAP2 genes of 10 dogs of nine diverse breeds were sequenced and SNPs causing synonymous or non-synonymous amino acid changes, deletions or insertions were identified. Eight ERAP1 and 10 ERAP2 SNPs were used to create a Sequenom MassARRAY iPLEX based test panel which defined 24 ERAP1, 36 ERAP2 and 128 ERAP1/2 haplotypes. The prevalence of these haplotypes was then measured among dog, wolf, coyote, jackal and red fox populations. Some haplotypes were species specific, while others were shared across species, especially between dog, wolf, coyote and jackal. The prevalence of these haplotypes was then compared among various canid populations, and in particular between various populations of random- and pure-bred dogs. Human-directed positive selection has led to loss of ERAP diversity and segregation of certain haplotypes among various dog breeds. A phylogenetic tree generated from 45 of the most common ERAP1/2 haplotypes demonstrated three distinct clades, all of which were rooted with haplotypes either shared among species or specific to contemporary dogs, coyote and wolf.
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