Evolution of repeat unit arrays in Nomascus LAVA elements. The consensus repeat unit (RU) arrays for each of the subfamilies are superimposed on a network based on alignment of the consensus sequences of the subfamilies’ 3’ U1-AluSz-U2-L1ME part (Additional file 1: Figure S4). As there are no differences to be observed between the VNTRs of LAVA_A1 and LAVA_A2, these two are presented as a single subfamily. The length of the network branches does not represent the evolutionary distance between the subfamilies. Note that in subfamilies LAVA_C1, LAVA_C4 and LAVA_E there are two different types of VNTRs.