Date of Award


Publication Type

Master Thesis

Degree Name



Great Lakes Institute for Environmental Research

First Advisor

Heath, Daniel (Biological Sciences)


Agriculture, Fisheries and Aquaculture.



Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.


An analysis of a library consisting of major histocompatibility (MH) class I A1 and class II B1 sequences for Chinook salmon (Oncorhynchus tshawytscha) identified mutation clusters or "hotspots" in the sequence, as well as identical mutations occurring independently. This suggests that the MH genes in Chinook salmon undergo somatic mutation. In sperm competition experiments jacks sired a higher proportion of eggs than hooknose males. Furthermore, an analysis of variance indicated that cryptic female choice had occurred. To further investigate this, I genotyped parents and offspring at the MH class I and class II peptide binding region to determine whether the differential fertilization success is driven by variation in genetic compatibility between the ova and sperm. I found that mate choice for the MH class I gene had not occurred; however, jack sperm that were more similar at the MH class II gene to the female had higher fertilization success.