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Mutation Modification in a Random Environment

John H. Gillespie
Evolution
Vol. 35, No. 3 (May, 1981), pp. 468-476
DOI: 10.2307/2408195
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2408195
Page Count: 9
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Mutation Modification in a Random Environment
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Abstract

The action of natural selection on mutation rates in a population in a temporally fluctuating environment is examined. The model incorporates a modifier locus that affects the mutation rate at a primary locus which is subject to fluctuating selection pressures. Both Monte-Carlo simulations and a loose-linkage analysis of the appropriate diffusion approximation of the model indicate that selection on mutation rates will operate toward three goals: the highest possible mutation rate, the lowest possible mutation rate, or an intermediate mutation rate. The actual goal is determined by the two parameters used to describe the action of selection on the primary locus. All of these adjustments of the mutation rates are done through individual rather than group selection.

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