Allele frequencies for six DNA polymorphisms have been studied in a population sample from Cantabria (middle north Spain) using the polymerase chain reaction. The HLA-DQA1 locus was analyzed by the reverse dot-blot technique and the other five by polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis followed by silver staining. Six alleles were found for HLA-DQA1, 15 alleles for D1S80, 6 alleles for HUMTHO1 and HUMCSF1PO, 7 for HUMTPOX and 8 alleles for HUMVWA. The 21 repeat allele in HUMVWA had not previously been reported in a Spanish population. The genotype distributions met Hardy-Weinberg expectations for all the systems and some statistical parameters of forensic interest were calculated. Comparisons with other populations revealed significant differences for HLA-DQA1, HUMVWA and HUMTHO1, with interracial differences being more pronounced than between Spanish populations. The HUMVWA system showed the highest forensic efficiency of the six polymorphisms studied.
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