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Resistance of Genetic Correlation Structure to Directional Selection in Drosophila melanogaster
Gerald S. Wilkinson, Kevin Fowler and Linda Partridge
Vol. 44, No. 8 (Dec., 1990), pp. 1990-2003
Published by: Society for the Study of Evolution
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2409609
Page Count: 14
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The genetic covariance and correlation matrices for five morphological traits were estimated from four populations of fruit flies, Drosophila melanogaster, to measure the extent of change in genetic covariances as a result of directional selection. Two of the populations were derived from lines that had undergone selection for large or small thorax length over the preceding 23 generations. A third population was constituted using flies from control lines that were maintained with equivalent population sizes as the selected lines. The fourth population contained flies from the original cage population from which the selected and control lines had been started. Tests of the homogeneity of covariance matrices using maximum likelihood techniques revealed significant changes in covariance structure among the selected lines. Prediction of base population trait means from selected line means under the assumption of constant genetic covariances indicated that genetic covariances for the small population differed more from the base population than did the covariances for the large population. The predicted small population means diverged farther from the expected means because the additive genetic variance associated with several traits increased in value and most of the genetic covariances associated with one trait changed in sign. These results illustrate that genetic covariances may remain nearly constant in some situations while changing markedly in others. Possible developmental reasons for the genetic changes are discussed.
Evolution © 1990 Society for the Study of Evolution