Two inbred mouse strains, CBA/J and CBA/CaJ, have been used nearly interchangeably as ‘good hearing’ standards for research in hearing and deafness. We recently reported, however, that these two strains diverge after 1 year of age, such that CBA/CaJ mice show more rapid elevation of compound action potential (CAP) thresholds at high frequencies (Ohlemiller, Brain Res. 1277: 70–83, 2009). One contributor is progressive decline in endocochlear potential (EP) that appears only in CBA/CaJ. Here, we explore the cellular bases of threshold and EP disparities in old CBA/J and CBA/CaJ mice. Among the major findings, both strains exhibit a characteristic age (∼18 months in CBA/J and 24 months in CBA/CaJ) when females overtake males in sensitivity decline. Strain differences in progression of hearing loss are not due to greater hair cell loss in CBA/CaJ, but instead appear to reflect greater neuronal loss, plus more pronounced changes in the lateral wall, leading to EP decline. While both male and female CBA/CaJ show these pathologies, they are more pronounced in females. A novel feature that differed sharply by strain was moderate loss of outer sulcus cells (or ‘root’ cells) in spiral ligament of the upper basal turn in old CBA/CaJ mice, giving rise to deep indentations and void spaces in the ligament. We conclude that CBA/CaJ mice differ both quantitatively and qualitatively from CBA/J in age-related cochlear pathology, and model different types of presbycusis.
presbycusis; stria vascularis; spiral ligament; endocochlear potential; hair cells; outer sulcus cells; marginal cells; gender effects; spiral ganglion
During the process of speciation, diverging taxa often hybridize and produce offspring wherein the heterogametic sex (i.e., XY or ZW) is unfit (Haldane's rule). Dominance theory seeks to explain Haldane's rule in terms of the difference in X-linked dominance regimes experienced by the sexes. However, X inactivation in female mammals extends the effects of hemizygosity to both sexes. Here, we highlight where the assumptions of dominance theory are particularly problematic in marsupials, where X inactivation uniformly results in silencing the paternal X. We then present evidence of Haldane's rule for sterility but not for viability in marsupials, as well as the first violations of Haldane's rule for these traits among all mammals. Marsupials represent a large taxonomic group possessing heteromorphic sex chromosomes, where the dominance theory cannot explain Haldane's rule. In this light, we evaluate alternative explanations for the preponderance of male sterility in interspecific hybrids, including faster male evolution, X–Y interactions, and genomic conflict hypotheses.
hybrid sterility; metatheria; reproductive isolation; speciation; X inactivation
Caenorhabditis elegans is an androdioecious nematode with both hermaphrodites and males. Although males can potentially play an important role in avoiding inbreeding and facilitating adaptation, their existence is evolutionarily problematic because they do not directly generate offspring in the way that hermaphrodites do. This review explores how genetic, population genomic, and experimental evolution approaches are being used to address the role of males and outcrossing within C. elegans. Although theory suggests that inbreeding depression and male mating ability should be the primary determinants of male frequency, this has yet to be convincingly confirmed experimentally. Genomic analysis of natural populations finds that outcrossing occurs at low, but not negligible levels, and that observed patterns of linkage disequilibrium consistent with strong selfing may instead be generated by natural selection against outcrossed progeny. Recent experimental evolution studies suggest that males can be maintained at fairly high levels if populations are initiated with sufficient genetic variation and/or subjected to strong natural selection via a change in the environment. For example, as reported here, populations adapting to novel laboratory rearing and temperature regimes maintain males at frequencies from 5% to 40%. Laboratory and field results still await full reconciliation, which may be facilitated by identifying the loci underlying among-strain differences in mating system dynamics.
androdioecy; experimental evolution; male mating; outbreeding depression; outcrossing; self-fertilization
Rexoid, curly hair mutations have been selected to develop new domestic cat breeds. The Selkirk Rex is the most recently established curly-coated cat breed originating from a spontaneous mutation that was discovered in the United States in 1987. Unlike the earlier and well-established Cornish and Devon Rex breeds with curly-coat mutations, the Selkirk Rex mutation is suggested as autosomal dominant and has a different curl phenotype. This study provides a genetic analysis of the Selkirk Rex breed. An informal segregation analysis of genetically proven matings supported an autosomal, incomplete dominant expression of the curly trait in the Selkirk Rex. Homozygous curl cats can be distinguished from heterozygous cats by head and body type, as well as the presentation of the hair curl. Bayesian clustering of short tandem repeat (STR) genotypes from 31 cats that represent the future breeding stock supported the close relationship of the Selkirk Rex to the British Shorthair, Scottish Fold, Persian, and Exotic Shorthair, suggesting the Selkirk as part of the Persian breed family. The high heterozygosity of 0.630 and the low mean inbreeding coefficient of 0.057 suggest that Selkirk Rex has a diverse genetic foundation. A new locus for Selkirk autosomal dominant Rex, SADRE, is suggested for the curly trait.
curly; dominant; feline; hair
To determine the genetic regulation of hair length in the domestic cat, a whole genome scan was performed in a multi-generational pedigree in which the long-haired phenotype was segregating. The two markers that demonstrated the greatest linkage to the long-haired trait (LOD≥6), flanked an estimated 10 Mb region on cat chromosome B1 containing the Fibroblast Growth Factor 5 gene (FGF5), a candidate gene implicated in regulating hair follicle growth cycle in other species. Sequence analyses of FGF5 in 26 cat breeds and two pedigrees of non-breed cats, revealed four separate mutations predicted to disrupt the biological activity of the FGF5 protein. Pedigree analyses demonstrated that different combinations of paired mutant FGF5 alleles segregated with the long-haired phenotype in an autosomal recessive manner. Association analyses of over 380 genotyped breed and non-breed cats were consistent with mutations in the FGF5 gene causing the long-haired phenotype in an autosomal recessive manner. In combination, these genomic approaches demonstrated that FGF5 is the major genetic determinant of hair length in the domestic cat.
Environmental temperature plays a crucial role in determining a species distribution and abundance by affecting individual physiological processes, metabolic activities, and developmental rates. Many studies have identified clinal variation in phenotypes associated with response to environmental stresses, but variation in traits associated with climatic adaptation directly attributed to sequence variation within candidate gene regions has been difficult to identify. Insect heat shock genes are possible agents of thermal tolerance because of their involvement in protein folding, traffic, protection, and renaturation at the cellular level in response to temperature stress. Previously, members of the Drosophila small heat shock protein (sHSP) complex (Hsp23, Hsp26, Hsp27, Hsp67Ba) have been implicated as candidate climatic adaptation genes; therefore, this research examines sequence variation at these genes in 2 distant populations of Drosophila pseudoobscura. Flies from Tempe, AZ (n = 30) and Cheney, WA (n = 17) were used in the study. We identify high differentiation in the heat-shock complex (FST : 0.219**, 0.262*, 0.279***, 0.166 not significant) as compared with neighboring genes and Tajima’s D values indicative of balancing selection (Mann–Whitney U = 38, n1 = 10 n2 = 4, P < 0.05 two-tailed), both of which are suggestive of such climatic adaptation.
balancing selection; environmental adaptability
Population genetic characteristics are shaped by the life-history traits of organisms and the geologic history of their habitat. This study provides a neutral framework for understanding the population dynamics and opportunities for selection in Semibalanus balanoides, a species that figures prominently in ecological and evolutionary studies in the Atlantic intertidal. We used mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) control region (N = 131) and microsatellite markers (∼40 individuals/site/locus) to survey populations of the broadly dispersing acorn barnacle from 8 sites spanning 800 km of North American coast and 1 site in Europe. Patterns of mtDNA sequence evolution were consistent with larger population sizes in Europe and population expansion at the conclusion of the last ice age, approximately 20 000 years ago, in North America. A significant portion of mitochondrial diversity was partitioned between the continents (φST = 0.281), but there was only weak structure observed from mtDNA within North America. Microsatellites showed significant structuring between the continents (FST = 0.021) as well as within North America (FST = 0.013). Isolation by distance in North America was largely driven by a split between populations south of Cape Cod and all others (P < 10−4). The glacial events responsible for generating allelic diversity at mtDNA and microsatellites may also be responsible for generating selectable variation at metabolic enzymes in S. balanoides.
glaciation; larval dispersal; microsatellites; mtDNA; phylogeography; Semibalanus balanoides
Pedimap is a user-friendly software tool for visualizing phenotypic and genotypic data for related individuals linked in pedigrees. Genetic data can include marker scores, Identity-by-Descent probabilities, and marker linkage map positions, allowing the visualization of haplotypes through lineages. The pedigrees can accommodate all types of inheritance, including selfing, cloning, and repeated backcrossing, and all ploidy levels are supported. Visual association of the genetic data with phenotypic data simplifies the exploration of large data sets, thereby improving breeding decision making. Data are imported from text files; in addition data exchange with other software packages (FlexQTLTM and GenomeStudioTM) is possible. Instructions for use and an executable version compatible with the Windows platform are available for free from http://www.plantbreeding.wur.nl/UK/software_pedimap.html.
genetic data; pedigree software; phenotypic data; plant breeding
The wildcat (Felis silvestris ssp.) is a conservation concern largely due to introgressive hybridization with its congener F. s. catus, the common domestic cat. Because of a recent divergence and entirely overlapping ranges, hybridization is common and pervasive between these taxa threatening the genetic integrity of remaining wildcat populations. Identifying pure wildcats for inclusion in conservation programs using current morphological discriminants is difficult because of gross similarity between them and the domestic, critically hampering conservation efforts. Here, we present a vetted panel of microsatellite loci and mitochondrial polymorphisms informative for each of the 5 naturally evolved wildcat subspecies and the derived domestic cat. We also present reference genotypes for each assignment class. Together, these marker sets and corresponding reference genotypes allow for the development of a genetic rational for defining “units of conservation” within a phylogenetically based taxonomy of the entire F. silvestris species complex. We anticipate this marker panel will allow conservators to assess genetic integrity and quantify admixture in managed wildcat populations and to be a starting point for more in-depth analysis of hybridization.
captive breeding; conservation genetics; hybridization; introgression; reintroduction microsatellite
The Alaskan sled dog offers a unique mechanism for studying the genetics of elite athletic performance. They are a group of mixed breed dogs, comprised of multiple common breeds, and a unique breed entity seen only as a part of the sled dog mix. Alaskan sled dogs are divided into 2 primary groups as determined by their racing skills. Distance dogs are capable of running over 1000 miles in 10 days, whereas sprint dogs run much shorter distances, approximately 30 miles, but in faster times, that is, 18–25 mph. Finding the genes that distinguish these 2 types of performers is likely to illuminate genetic contributors to human athletic performance. In this study, we tested for association between polymorphisms in 2 candidate genes; angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) and myostatin (MSTN) and enhanced speed and endurance performance in 174 Alaskan sled dogs. We observed 81 novel genetic variants within the ACE gene and 4 within the MSTN gene, including a polymorphism within the ACE gene that significantly (P value 2.38 × 10−5) distinguished the sprint versus distance populations.
Alaskan sled dogs; angiotensin-converting enzyme; myostatin; performance genetics
Short interspersed nuclear elements (SINEs) are a type of class 1 transposable element (retrotransposon) with features that allow investigators to resolve evolutionary relationships between populations and species while providing insight into genome composition and function. Characterization of a Carnivora-specific SINE family, Can-SINEs, has, has aided comparative genomic studies by providing rare genomic changes, and neutral sequence variants often needed to resolve difficult evolutionary questions. In addition, Can-SINEs constitute a significant source of functional diversity with Carnivora. Publication of the whole-genome sequence of domestic dog, domestic cat, and giant panda serves as a valuable resource in comparative genomic inferences gleaned from Can-SINEs. In anticipation of forthcoming studies bolstered by new genomic data, this review describes the discovery and characterization of Can-SINE motifs as well as describes composition, distribution, and effect on genome function. As the contribution of noncoding sequences to genomic diversity becomes more apparent, SINEs and other transposable elements will play an increasingly large role in mammalian comparative genomics.
carnivore; genome; SINE
Intralocus sexual conflict occurs due to the expression of sexually antagonistic alleles: those that increase fitness when expressed in one sex but decrease fitness when expressed in the other sex. This genetic conflict is expected whenever the sexes are selected toward differing phenotypic optima for a trait that has a positive genetic correlation between the sexes. Here we synthesize recent developments in the areas of genomics, microarray analysis, and developmental and molecular genetics to establish feasible mechanisms by which the intersexual genetic correlation can be reduced, as well as the time course over which conflict resolution is expected to evolve.
genetic correlation; intralocus sexual conflict; microarray; sex-biased gene expression; sexual dimorphism
Traits that have been stringently selected to conform to specific criteria in a closed population are phenotypic stereotypes. In dogs, Canis familiaris, such stereotypes have been produced by breeding for conformation, performance (behaviors), etc. We measured phenotypes on a representative sample to establish breed stereotypes. DNA samples from 147 dog breeds were used to characterize single nucleotide polymorphism allele frequencies for association mapping of breed stereotypes. We identified significant size loci (quantitative trait loci [QTLs]), implicating candidate genes appropriate to regulation of size (e.g., IGF1, IGF2BP2
SMAD2, etc.). Analysis of other morphological stereotypes, also under extreme selection, identified many additional significant loci. Behavioral loci for herding, pointing, and boldness implicated candidate genes appropriate to behavior (e.g., MC2R, DRD1, and PCDH9). Significant loci for longevity, a breed characteristic inversely correlated with breed size, were identified. The power of this approach to identify loci regulating the incidence of specific polygenic diseases is demonstrated by the association of a specific IGF1 haplotype with hip dysplasia, patella luxation, and pacreatitis.
association; canine; disease; longevity; morphology; QTL
Two percentage of the cat genome is a repetitive, feline-specific satellite sequence (FA-SAT) of 483 bp and 65% guanine-cytosine content. Previous chromosomal localization of the satellite has demonstrated the satellite’s presence on several discrete regions of the telomeres of chromosomes, predominately on the D, E, and F chromosome groups. The recent assembly of the 1.9× whole-genome shotgun (WGS) sequence of cat illustrates the challenge of the assembly of these large numbers of relatively short, similar sequences. Clones with paired end reads that include FA-SAT sequence have a high level of assembly discrepancies compared with clones with other types of repetitive elements, such as short interspersed nuclear elements (SINEs) and long interspersed nuclear elements (LINEs). The influence of the presence of FA-SAT but not SINEs and LINEs on genome assembly may likely reflect the evolutionary emergence of FA-SAT, which has lead to an excess of FA-SAT copies with identical sequence, which is less an issue with older, more diverse SINE and LINE sequences. The FA-SATs are restricted to a few hundred discrete regions of the cat genome, and associated errors in the assembly seem to be restricted to these loci. The findings regarding the feline-specific sequence should be considered in the pending 8x assembly of the cat genome.
artifacts; FA-SAT; genome assembly; repetitive elements; satellite; whole-genome shotgun
High-quality sequencing of the dog (Canis lupus familiaris) genome has enabled enormous progress in genetic mapping of canine phenotypic variation. The red fox (Vulpes vulpes), another canid species, also exhibits a wide range of variation in coat color, morphology, and behavior. Although the fox genome has not yet been sequenced, canine genomic resources have been used to construct a meiotic linkage map of the red fox genome and begin genetic mapping in foxes. However, a more detailed gene-specific comparative map between the dog and fox genomes is required to establish gene order within homologous regions of dog and fox chromosomes and to refine breakpoints between homologous chromosomes of the 2 species. In the current study, we tested whether canine-derived gene–containing bacterial artificial chromosome (BAC) clones can be routinely used to build a gene-specific map of the red fox genome. Forty canine BAC clones were mapped to the red fox genome by fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH). Each clone was uniquely assigned to a single fox chromosome, and the locations of 38 clones agreed with cytogenetic predictions. These results clearly demonstrate the utility of FISH mapping for construction of a whole-genome gene-specific map of the red fox. The further possibility of using canine BAC clones to map genes in the American mink (Mustela vison) genome was also explored. Much lower success was obtained for this more distantly related farm-bred species, although a few BAC clones were mapped to the predicted chromosomal locations.
Canis lupus familiaris; comparative genomics; FISH; Mustela vison; Vulpes vulpes
Histiocytic sarcoma (HS) refers to a highly aggressive and frequently disseminated neoplastic disease belonging to the class of canine histiocytic proliferative disorders. Disseminated HS (previously called malignant histiocytosis) is highly breed specific, with Bernese mountain dogs (BMDs), rottweilers, and retrievers having a high prevalence with a frequency of approximately 25% in the BMD breed. We collected DNA samples and clinical information from 800 BMDs, of which 200 are affected by HS. To better characterize the physiopathology and epidemiology, an in-depth analysis of 89 BMD cases has been performed. The mean age of onset was 6.5 years, males and females being equally affected. The clinical features, biochemical parameters, and pathological features have been determined. The life span after diagnosis has been estimated to be 49 days. A large BMD pedigree of 327 dogs, 121 of which are affected, was assembled. Using a subset of 160 BMDs, encompassing 21 complete sibships, we now propose an oligogenic transmission mode of the disease. Whole-genome linkage scans as well as association studies using a case/control analysis, in parallel with expression profiling of neoplastic versus normal histiocytes, are all underway. Altogether, these complementary approaches are expected to localize the genes for HS in the BMD, leading to advances in our knowledge of histiocyte diseases in dogs and humans.
Bernese mountain dogs; cancer; dog; genetics; histiocytic sarcoma
The extent to which taste receptor specificity correlates with, or even predicts, diet choice is not known. We recently reported that the insensitivity to sweeteners shown by species of Felidae can be explained by their lacking of a functional Tas1r2 gene. To broaden our understanding of the relationship between the structure of the sweet receptors and preference for sugars and artificial sweeteners, we measured responses to 12 sweeteners in 6 species of Carnivora and sequenced the coding regions of Tas1r2 in these same or closely related species. The lion showed no preference for any of the 12 sweet compounds tested, and it possesses the pseudogenized Tas1r2. All other species preferred some of the natural sugars, and their Tas1r2 sequences, having complete open reading frames, predict functional sweet receptors. In addition to preferring natural sugars, the lesser panda also preferred 3 (neotame, sucralose, and aspartame) of the 6 artificial sweeteners. Heretofore, it had been reported that among vertebrates, only Old World simians could taste aspartame. The observation that the lesser panda highly preferred aspartame could be an example of evolutionary convergence in the identification of sweet stimuli.
carnivore; diet; sweeteners; sweet receptor; taste testing
The SILVER locus has been mapped in the domestic cat, identifying a unique genomic location distinct from that of any known reported gene associated with silver or hypopigmentation in mammals. A demonstrated lack of linkage to SILV, the strong candidate gene for silver, led to the initiation of a genome scan utilizing 2 pedigrees segregating for silver coat color. Linkage mapping defined a genomic region for SILVER as a 3.3-Mb region, (95.87–99.21 Mb) on chromosome D2, (peak logarithm of the odds = 10.5, θ = 0), which displays conserved synteny to a genomic interval between 118.58 and 121.85 Mb on chromosome 10 in the human genome. In the domestic cat, mutations at the SILVER locus suppress the development of pigment in the hair, but in contrast to other mammalian silver variants, there is an apparently greater influence on the production of pheomelanin than eumelanin pigment. The mapping of a novel locus for SILVER offers much promise in identifying a gene that may help elucidate aspects of pheomelanogenesis, a pathway that has been very elusive, and illustrates the promise of the cat genome project in increasing our understanding of basic biological processes of general relevance for mammals.
coat color; domestic cat; genetic linkage mapping; pheomelanogenic; SILVER
Wolbachia bacteria in mosquitoes induce cytoplasmic incompatibility (CI), where sperm from Wolbachia-infected males can produce inviable progeny. The wPip strain in the Culex pipiens group of mosquitoes produces a complexity of CI crossing types. Several factors are thought to be capable of influencing the expression of CI including Wolbachia strain type and host genotype. In this study, the unidirectional CI that occurs between 2 C. pipiens complex laboratory strains, Col and Mol, was further investigated by nuclear genotype introgression. The unidirectional CI between Col and Mol was not found to be influenced by host genetic background, in contrast to a previous introgression study carried out using bidirectionally incompatible C. pipiens group strains. A line containing both wPip strain variants superinfection was also generated by embryonic cytoplasmic transfer. The same crossing type as the parental Col strain was observed in the superinfected line. Quantitative polymerase chain reaction demonstrated a low density of the injected wPipMol variant in the superinfected line after 18 generations, which was considered likely to be responsible for the crossing patterns observed. The Wolbachia density was also shown to be lower in the parental Mol strain males compared with Col strain males, and no inverse relationship between WO phage and Wolbachia density could be detected.
cytoplasmic incompatibility; Wolbachia
The human genome project has been recently complemented by whole-genome assessment sequence of 32 mammals and 24 nonmammalian vertebrate species suitable for comparative genomic analyses. Here we anticipate a precipitous drop in costs and increase in sequencing efficiency, with concomitant development of improved annotation technology and, therefore, propose to create a collection of tissue and DNA specimens for 10 000 vertebrate species specifically designated for whole-genome sequencing in the very near future. For this purpose, we, the Genome 10K Community of Scientists (G10KCOS), will assemble and allocate a biospecimen collection of some 16 203 representative vertebrate species spanning evolutionary diversity across living mammals, birds, nonavian reptiles, amphibians, and fishes (ca. 60 000 living species). In this proposal, we present precise counts for these 16 203 individual species with specimens presently tagged and stipulated for DNA sequencing by the G10KCOS. DNA sequencing has ushered in a new era of investigation in the biological sciences, allowing us to embark for the first time on a truly comprehensive study of vertebrate evolution, the results of which will touch nearly every aspect of vertebrate biological enquiry.
ancestral state reconstruction; comparative genomics; G10K; molecular evolution; species conservation; vertebrate biology
Recent advances in genome sequencing have led to a vast accumulation of transposable element data. Consideration of the genome sequencing projects in a phylogenetic context reveals that despite the hundreds of eukaryotic genomes that have been sequenced, a strong bias in sampling exists. There is a general under-representation of unicellular eukaryotes and a dearth of genome projects in many branches of the eukaryotic phylogeny. Among sequenced genomes, great variation in genome size exists, however, little difference in the total number of cellular genes is observed. For many eukaryotes, the remaining genomic space is extremely dynamic and predominantly composed of a menagerie of populations of transposable elements. Given the dynamic nature of the genomic niche filled by transposable elements, it is evident that these elements have played an important role in genome evolution. The contribution of transposable elements to genome architecture and to the advent of genetic novelty is likely to be dependent, at least in part, on the transposition mechanism, diversity, number, and rate of turnover of transposable elements in the genome at any given time. The focus of this review is the discussion of some of the forces that act to shape transposable element diversity within and between genomes.
gene mapping; genome evolution; transposable element
Behavioral genetic mapping studies in model organisms predominantly use crosses originating from a single pair of inbred lines to determine the location of alleles that confer genetic variation in the trait of interest, and they often make sweeping generalizations about the genetic architecture of the trait based on these results. A previous study fine mapped mate preference variation between one pair of Drosophila pseudoobscura lines and identified 2 strong-effect behavioral quantitative trait loci (QTLs). Here, we replicated the previous study's mapping design to examine the extent of variation at these behavioral QTLs across 6 pairs of lines, but we were unable to detect effects of either QTL region in the pairs of lines studied. We suggest that the low-discrimination alleles at these 2 QTLs may occur at low frequency within D. pseudoobscura, although other explanations for the inconsistency are possible. These results underscore the need to examine multiple strains across a species when describing the genetic variation underlying behavioral traits.
Drosophila; QTL mapping; sexual isolation; species discrimination
The challenge of maintaining genetic diversity within populations can be exacerbated for island endemics if they display population dynamics and behavioral attributes that expose them to genetic drift without the benefits of gene flow. We assess patterns of the genetic structure and demographic history in 27 populations of 9 species of flightless endemic Galápagos weevils from 9 of the islands and 1 winged introduced close relative. Analysis of mitochondrial DNA reveals a significant population structure and moderately variable, though demographically stable, populations for lowland endemics (FST = 0.094–0.541; π: 0.014–0.042; Mismatch P = 0.003–0.026; and D(Tajima) = −0.601 to 1.203), in contrast to signals of past contractions and expansions in highland specialists on 2 islands (Mismatch P = 0.003–0.026 and D(Tajima) = −0.601 to 1.203). We interpret this series of variable and highly structured population groups as a system of long-established, independently founded island units, where structuring could be a signal of microallopatric differentiation due to patchy host plant distribution and poor dispersal abilities. We suggest that the severe reduction and subsequent increase of a suitably moist habitat that accompanied past climatic variation could have contributed to the observed population fluctuations in highland specialists. We propose the future exploration of hybridization between the introduced and highland endemic species on Santa Cruz, especially given the expansion of the introduced species into the highlands, the sensitivity to past climatic variation detected in highland populations, and the potentially threatened state of single-island endemics.
flightlessness; Galapaganus; gene flow; islands; mitochondrial DNA; population structure
An endogenous meiotic driver in the dengue and yellow fever vector mosquito Aedes aegypti can cause highly male-biased sex ratio distortion in crosses from suitable genetic backgrounds. We previously selected a strain that carries a strong meiotic drive gene (D) linked with the male-determining allele (M) on chromosome 1 in A. aegypti. Here, we performed segregation analysis of the MD locus among backcross (BC1) progeny from a driver male and drive-sensitive females. Assessment of sex ratios among BC2 progeny showed ∼5.2% recombination between the MD locus and the sex determination locus. Multipoint linkage mapping across this region revealed consistent marker orders and recombination frequencies with the existing reference linkage map and placed the MD locus within a 6.5-cm interval defined by the LF159 locus and microsatellite marker 446GAA, which should facilitate future positional cloning efforts.
gene drive; linkage map; microsatellite; segregation distortion; sex linkage; SSCP
Anopheles stephensi is one of the major vectors of malaria in the Middle East and Indo-Pakistan subcontinent. Understanding the population genetic structure of malaria mosquitoes is important for developing adequate and successful vector control strategies. Commonly used markers for inferring anopheline taxonomic and population status include microsatellites and chromosomal inversions. Knowledge about chromosomal locations of microsatellite markers with respect to polymorphic inversions could be useful for better understanding a genetic structure of natural populations. However, fragments with microsatellites used in population genetic studies are usually too short for successful labeling and hybridization with chromosomes. We designed new primers for amplification of microsatellite loci identified in the A. stephensi genome sequenced with next-generation technologies. Twelve microsatellites were mapped to polytene chromosomes from ovarian nurse cells of A. stephensi using fluorescent in situ hybridization. All microsatellites hybridized to unique locations on autosomes, and 7 of them localized to the largest arm 2R. Ten microsatellites were mapped inside the previously described polymorphic chromosomal inversions, including 4 loci located inside the widespread inversion 2Rb. We analyzed microsatellite-based population genetic data available for A. stephensi in light of our mapping results. This study demonstrates that the chromosomal position of microsatellites may affect estimates of population genetic parameters and highlights the importance of developing physical maps for nonmodel organisms.
genome sequence; malaria vector; polymorphic inversion; polytene chromosome; population structure