Self-fertilization sweeps up variation in the worm genome.
ABSTRACT A new study reports a comprehensive survey of genetic diversity in natural populations of the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans. Their analyses suggest that recent chromosome-scale selective sweeps have reduced C. elegans genetic diversity worldwide and strongly structured genetic variation across its genome.
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Article: Genetic hitchhiking.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Selection on one or more genes inevitably perturbs other genes, even when those genes have no direct effect on fitness. This article reviews the theory of such genetic hitchhiking, concentrating on effects on neutral loci. Maynard Smith and Haigh introduced the classical case where the perturbation is due to a single favourable mutation. This is contrasted with the apparently distinct effects of inherited variation in fitness due to loosely linked loci. A model of fluctuating selection is analysed which bridges these alternative treatments. When alleles sweep between extreme frequencies at a rate lambda, the rate of drift is increased by a factor (1 + E[1/pq]lambda/(2(2lambda + r))), where the recombination rate r is much smaller than the strength of selection. In spatially structured populations, the effects of any one substitution are weaker, and only cause a local increase in the frequency of a neutral allele. This increase depends primarily on the rate of recombination relative to selection (r/s), and more weakly, on the neighbourhood size, Nb = 4(pi rho sigma)2. Spatial subdivision may allow local selective sweeps to occur more frequently than is indicated by the overall rate of molecular evolution. However, it seems unlikely that such sweeps can be sufficiently frequent to increase significantly the drift of neutral alleles.Philosophical Transactions of The Royal Society B Biological Sciences 12/2000; 355(1403):1553-62. · 6.23 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: A fundamental problem in genome biology is to elucidate the evolutionary forces responsible for generating nonrandom patterns of genome organization. As the first metazoan to benefit from full-genome sequencing, Caenorhabditis elegans has been at the forefront of research in this area. Studies of genomic patterns, and their evolutionary underpinnings, continue to be augmented by the recent push to obtain additional full-genome sequences of related Caenorhabditis taxa. In the near future, we expect to see major advances with the onset of whole-genome resequencing of multiple wild individuals of the same species. In this review, we synthesize many of the important insights to date in our understanding of genome organization and function that derive from the evolutionary principles made explicit by theoretical population genetics and molecular evolution and highlight fertile areas for future research on unanswered questions in C. elegans genome evolution. We call attention to the need for C. elegans researchers to generate and critically assess nonadaptive hypotheses for genomic and developmental patterns, in addition to adaptive scenarios. We also emphasize the potential importance of evolution in the gonochoristic (female and male) ancestors of the androdioecious (hermaphrodite and male) C. elegans as the source for many of its genomic and developmental patterns.Molecular Biology and Evolution 04/2009; 26(6):1199-234. · 10.35 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) discovery and genotyping are essential to genetic mapping. There remains a need for a simple, inexpensive platform that allows high-density SNP discovery and genotyping in large populations. Here we describe the sequencing of restriction-site associated DNA (RAD) tags, which identified more than 13,000 SNPs, and mapped three traits in two model organisms, using less than half the capacity of one Illumina sequencing run. We demonstrated that different marker densities can be attained by choice of restriction enzyme. Furthermore, we developed a barcoding system for sample multiplexing and fine mapped the genetic basis of lateral plate armor loss in threespine stickleback by identifying recombinant breakpoints in F(2) individuals. Barcoding also facilitated mapping of a second trait, a reduction of pelvic structure, by in silico re-sorting of individuals. To further demonstrate the ease of the RAD sequencing approach we identified polymorphic markers and mapped an induced mutation in Neurospora crassa. Sequencing of RAD markers is an integrated platform for SNP discovery and genotyping. This approach should be widely applicable to genetic mapping in a variety of organisms.PLoS ONE 02/2008; 3(10):e3376. · 3.73 Impact Factor