Volume 38, Issue 6 (November 1993)
Direct Sequencing of the Human Protamine P1 Gene and Application in Forensic Medicine
Protamines are among the most variable nuclear proteins known in eukaryotes. In order to learn more about their evolution and function in humans and to explore the possibility of potential applications in forensic medicine we have developed a rapid method to amplify and directly sequence the protamine P1 gene simultaneously in many different samples. The method takes only 3.5 h from genomic DNA to the sequencing reactions. Despite the high variability of these genes only one polymorphic site was detected at the coding region level in different individuals. This polymorphic variation does not create a change in the amino-acid sequence of the protamine. Because all the protamine genes sequenced from different species are markedly different among them as well as to the human sequence, amplification and direct sequencing of this gene can be used to unequivocally identify the human or animal origin of biological specimens. Furthermore, the single polymorphic site detected in the human P1 gene could be useful in conjunction with other markers in identification studies in humans.