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In particular the duplications and other events leading to the A, B, and C loci occurred well before their divergence. As a group, the chimpanzeealleles lack shared sequences or substitutions that are chimpanzee-specific and would enable chimpanzee and human sequences to be distinguished; in contrast, both humanand chimpanzee alleles can be distinguished from the class-I alleles of a more divergent species, the mouse(Figure 6). Althoughthe numberof allelic sequences is small, a similar pattern is seen for alleles of a locus: no features distinguish all humanalleles of a locus from all chimpanzeealleles of the homologouslocus.

Org by HINARI on 08/29/07. For personal use only. 28 LAWLOR ET AL organismswith manyinterdependent, rapidly communicating, and specialized cells (3). At that point in eukaryoticevolutionit became both possible to developcells specialized for surveillance of their fellows, because sufficient existing functionscould be secondedto the purpose, andadvantageous, because incapacitation of a few cells, through the agency of pathogens, parasites or toxins, could compromisethe whole organism. Keyquestions concernthe order in whichvarious molecularand cellular specializations were recruited into the immunesystem, the "pre-immune" role of those specializations, and their evolution after immune involvement.

This led to controversy as much,it seems, with the choice of nameas the unpalatability of the process(70, 71). Objectionsweremadeto the lack formal genetic proof for geneconversion; the evidencefromthe sequence relationships was trivialized, and convergentevolution wasinvoked to explain the shared substitutions. Theresulting brouhahaturned invention to nomenclature,generating a variety of vague, well-intentioned euphemisms-segmental exchange, recombinational mechanisms,copy-choice, genetic exchangeevents--that nowconfusethe literature.

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