Cynomolgus macaques (Macaca fascicularis) provide increasingly common models for infectious disease research. Several geographically distinct populations of these macaques from Southeast Asia and the Indian Ocean island of Mauritius are available for pathogenesis studies. Though host genetics may profoundly impact results of such studies, similarities and differences between populations are often overlooked. In this study we identified 47 full-length MHC class I nucleotide sequences in 16 cynomolgus macaques of Filipino origin. The majority of MHC class I sequences characterized (39 of 47) were unique to this regional population. However, we discovered eight sequences with perfect identity and six sequences with close similarity to previously defined MHC class I sequences from other macaque populations. We identified two ancestral MHC haplotypes that appear to be shared between Filipino and Mauritian cynomolgus macaques, notably a Mafa-B haplotype that has previously been shown to protect Mauritian cynomolgus macaques against challenge with a simian/human immunodeficiency virus, SHIV89.6P. We also identified a Filipino cynomolgus macaque MHC class I sequence for which the predicted protein sequence differs from Mamu-B*17 by a single amino acid. This is important because Mamu-B*17 is strongly associated with protection against simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) challenge in Indian rhesus macaques. These findings have implications for the evolutionary history of Filipino cynomolgus macaques as well as for the use of this model in SIV/SHIV research protocols.
- Macaca fascicularis
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