Asexual but not clonal: evolutionary processes in automictic populations

Engelstaedter, Jan (2017) Asexual but not clonal: evolutionary processes in automictic populations. Genetics, 206 2: 993-1009. doi:10.1534/genetics.116.196873


Author Engelstaedter, Jan
Title Asexual but not clonal: evolutionary processes in automictic populations
Journal name Genetics   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0016-6731
1943-2631
Publication date 2017-06-01
Year available 2017
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1534/genetics.116.196873
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 206
Issue 2
Start page 993
End page 1009
Total pages 17
Place of publication Bethesda, MD, United States
Publisher Genetics Society of America
Language eng
Subject 1311 Genetics
Abstract Many parthenogenetically reproducing animals produce offspring not clonally but through different mechanisms collectively referred to as automixis. Here, meiosis proceeds normally but is followed by a fusion of meiotic products that restores diploidy. This mechanism typically leads to a reduction in heterozygosity among the offspring compared to the mother. Following a derivation of the rate at which heterozygosity is lost at one and two loci, depending on the number of crossovers between loci and centromere, a number of models are developed to gain a better understanding of basic evolutionary processes in automictic populations. Analytical results are obtained for the expected neutral genetic variation, effective population size, mutation–selection balance, selection with overdominance, the spread of beneficial mutations, and selection on crossover rates. These results are complemented by numerical investigations elucidating how associative overdominance (two off-phase deleterious mutations at linked loci behaving like an overdominant locus) can in some cases maintain heterozygosity for prolonged times, and how clonal interference affects adaptation in automictic populations. These results suggest that although automictic populations are expected to suffer from the lack of gene shuffling with other individuals, they are nevertheless, in some respects, superior to both clonal and outbreeding sexual populations in the way they respond to beneficial and deleterious mutations. Implications for related genetic systems such as intratetrad mating, clonal reproduction, selfing, as well as different forms of mixed sexual and automictic reproduction are discussed.
Keyword Automixis
Parthenogenesis
Neutral genetic variation
Overdominance
Mutation-selection balance
Central fusion
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
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