The aim of the study was to describe the mechanism of mitochondrial DNA inheritance in a group of farmed raccoon dogs. The study involved 354 individuals. Whole peripheral blood was the research material. DNA was isolated and PCR was performed for two fragments of mitochondrial genes: COX1 (cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 gene) and COX2 (cytochrome oxidase subunit 2 gene). The PCR products were sequenced and subjected to bioinformatics analyses. Three mitochondrial haplotypes were identified in the COX1 gene fragment and two in the COX2 gene fragment. The analysis of mtDNA inheritance in the paternal line confirmed the three cases of paternal mtDNA inheritance, i.e. the so-called “paternal leakage” in the analysed population. In two families, all offspring inherited paternal mitochondrial DNA, whereas in one family one descendant inherited paternal mtDNA and another one inherited maternal mtDNA. The lineage data indicated that one female which inherited maternal mitochondrial DNA transferred it onto the next generation. To sum up, the results of the study for the first time demonstrated the phenomenon of “paternal leakage” in farmed raccoon dogs, which facilitated description of mitochondrial DNA inheritance in the paternal line.
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