Mitochondrial control region and 12S rRNA variation in Przewalski's horse
Meanwhile, the researchers are gleaning information about horse domestication by identifying genes that differ among domestic horses, Przewalski's horses and the fossils.
Caption: Przewalski's horses (one shown in Mongolia) are the last truly wild species of horse, a new study of ancient DNA suggests.
Przewalski's horses historically live on grasslands that are now part of China's Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region and Mongolia.
China started a breeding program for the species in 1985, relying on Przewalski's horses brought back to the WHPC from Britain, Germany and the United States to breed the species.
In the 20th century, hunting brought Przewalski's horses
to the verge of extinction.
These separate, small bands became the only Przewalski's horses
left in the world.
Another major breeding program at the world's zoos and the Wild Animal Park is for the Przewalski's horse
, the world's original equine.
Because the wild horse has an extra pair of chromosomes compared with modern domestic horses, the team was surprised to find that Przewalski's horse
had no SNPs of its own.
The center houses some 300 animals representing more than 30 species, including red pandas, Eld's deer, Przewalski's horses
, and Guam rails.
Three Przewalski's horses
-- only ever seen in zoos and cave paintings -- are being grazed on a patch of land in Clocaenog Forest.