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The divergence of a polygenic system subject to stabilizing selection, mutation and drift

  • Nick Barton (a1)
  • DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0016672300028378
  • Published online: 01 April 2009
Abstract
Summary

Polygenic variation can be maintained by a balance between mutation and stabilizing selection. When the alleles responsible for variation are rare, many classes of equilibria may be stable. The rate at which drift causes shifts between equilibria is investigated by integrating the gene frequency distribution 2NΠ(pq)4Nμ−1. This integral can be found exactly, by numerical integration, or can be approximated by assuming that the full distribution of allele frequencies is approximately Gaussian. These methods are checked against simulations. Over a wide range of population sizes, drift will keep the population near an equilibrium which minimizes the genetic variance and the deviation from the selective optimum. Shifts between equilibria in this class occur at an appreciable rate if the product of population size and selection on each locus is small (Nsα2 < 10). The Gaussian approximation is accurate even when the underlying distribution is strongly skewed. Reproductive isolation evolves as populations shift to new combinations of alleles: however, this process is slow, approaching the neutral rate (≈ μ) in small populations.

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This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

N. H. Barton & B. Charlesworth (1984). Genetic revolutions, founder effects, and speciation. Annual Reviews of Ecology and Systematics 15, 133164.

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P. Foley (1987). Molecular clock rates at loci under stabilizing selection. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science (USA) 84, 79968000.

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M. Kimura (1981). Possibility of extensive neutral evolution under stabilizing selection with special reference to non-random usage of synonymous codons. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science (USA) 78, 57735777.

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M. Turelli (1984). Heritable genetic variation via mutation-selection balance: Lerch's zeta meets the abdominal bristle. Theoretical Population Biology 25, 138193.

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Genetics Research
  • ISSN: 0016-6723
  • EISSN: 1469-5073
  • URL: /core/journals/genetics-research
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