Adaptive evolution of color vision as seen through the eyes of butterflies

Frentiu, Francesca D., Bernard, Gary D., Cuevas, Cristina I., Sison-Mangus, Marilou P., Prudic, Kathleen L. and Briscoe, Adriana D. (2007) Adaptive evolution of color vision as seen through the eyes of butterflies. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of USA, 104 Supp. 1: 8634-8640. doi:10.1073/pnas.0701447104

Author Frentiu, Francesca D.
Bernard, Gary D.
Cuevas, Cristina I.
Sison-Mangus, Marilou P.
Prudic, Kathleen L.
Briscoe, Adriana D.
Title Adaptive evolution of color vision as seen through the eyes of butterflies
Journal name Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of USA   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0027-8424
Publication date 2007-05-15
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1073/pnas.0701447104
Open Access Status Not Open Access
Volume 104
Issue Supp. 1
Start page 8634
End page 8640
Total pages 7
Place of publication Washington, DC, U.S.A.
Publisher National Academy of Sciences
Collection year 2009
Language eng
Subject 0603 Evolutionary Biology
Formatted abstract
Butterflies and primates are interesting for comparative color vision studies, because both have evolved middle- (M) and long-wavelength- (L) sensitive photopigments with overlapping absorbance spectrum maxima (λmax values). Although positive selection is important for the maintenance of spectral variation within the primate pigments, it remains an open question whether it contributes similarly to the diversification of butterfly pigments. To examine this issue, we performed epimicrospectrophotometry on the eyes of five Limenitis butterfly species and found a 31-nm range of variation in the λmax values of the L-sensitive photopigments (514–545 nm). We cloned partial Limenitis L opsin gene sequences and found a significant excess of replacement substitutions relative to polymorphisms among species. Mapping of these L photopigment λmax values onto a phylogeny revealed two instances within Lepidoptera of convergently evolved L photopigment lineages whose λmax values were blue-shifted. A codon-based maximum-likelihood analysis indicated that, associated with the two blue spectral shifts, four amino acid sites (Ile17Met, Ala64Ser, Asn70Ser, and Ser137Ala) have evolved substitutions in parallel and exhibit significant d/dS >1. Homology modeling of the full-length Limenitis arthemis astyanax L opsin placed all four substitutions within the chromophore-binding pocket. Strikingly, the Ser137Ala substitution is in the same position as a site that in primates is responsible for a 5- to 7-nm blue spectral shift. Our data show that some of the same amino acid sites are under positive selection in the photopigments of both butterflies and primates, spanning an evolutionary distance >500 million years.
© 2007 by The National Academy of Sciences of the USA
Keyword Evolution
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status Non-UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Excellence in Research Australia (ERA) - Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
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Created: Tue, 03 Mar 2009, 10:09:50 EST by Ms Karen Naughton on behalf of School of Biological Sciences