Relationships between the human pepsinogen DNA and protein polymorphisms

Am J Hum Genet. 1986 Jun;38(6):848-54.


Pepsinogens (PGA) are the inactive precursors of pepsin, the major acid protease found in the stomach. The PGA gene family exhibits polymorphic variation in human populations that can either be demonstrated by electrophoretic analysis of the proteins or by analysis of the respective genes with cDNA probes. Here, we describe the interrelationships between the most common pepsinogen protein phenotypes and the corresponding pepsinogen haplotypes (A, B, and C) containing different combinations of the PGA3, PGA4, and PGA5 genes. We propose that this unusual genetic variation involving haplotypes that contain three, two, and one genes, respectively, is the result of molecular evolution by gene duplication.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Chromosomes, Human, 6-12 and X*
  • DNA / genetics
  • DNA Restriction Enzymes
  • Genetic Linkage*
  • Genetic Markers
  • Humans
  • Pepsinogens / genetics*
  • Phenotype
  • Polymorphism, Genetic*
  • Proteins / genetics*


  • Genetic Markers
  • Pepsinogens
  • Proteins
  • DNA
  • DNA Restriction Enzymes