Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Hemoglobin Alleles

Genetic adaptations to malaria in humans and other primates seem to be allelic variants of normal adult hemoglobin, which consists of two alpha and two beta polypeptide chains, each characterized by a specific normal sequence of amino acids. Common alleles of hemoglobin are usually found in regions where malaria is (or was) endemic, and often confer a fitness advantage to the heterozygotes. Mutations and deletions of Hb chains

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