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Heterosis and Outbreeding Depression in Interpopulation Crosses Spanning a Wide Range of Divergence

Suzanne Edmands
Evolution
Vol. 53, No. 6 (Dec., 1999), pp. 1757-1768
DOI: 10.2307/2640438
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2640438
Page Count: 12
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Heterosis and Outbreeding Depression in Interpopulation Crosses Spanning a Wide Range of Divergence
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Abstract

The intertidal copepod Tigriopus californicus was used as a model organism to look at effects of crossing distance on fitness and to investigate the genetic mechanisms responsible. Crosses were conducted between 12 pairs of populations spanning a broad range of both geographic distance (5 m to 2007 km) and genetic distance (0.2% to 22.3% sequence divergence for a 606-bp segment of the mitochondrial COI gene). For each pair of populations, three fitness components (hatching number, survivorship number, and metamorphosis number) were measured in up to 16 cohorts including parentals, reciprocal F1, F2, F3, and first-generation backcross hybrids. Comparisons of each set of cohorts allowed estimation of within- and between-locus gene interaction. Relative to parentals, F1 hybrids showed a trend toward increased fitness, with no correspondence with population divergence, and a decrease in variance, which in some cases correlated with population divergence. In sharp contrast, F2 hybrids had a decrease in fitness and an increase in variance that both corresponded to population divergence. Genetic interpretation of these patterns suggests that both the beneficial effects of dominance and the detrimental effects of breaking up coadaptation are magnified by increasing evolutionary distance between populations. Because there is no recombination in T. californicus females, effects of recombination can be assessed by comparing F1 hybrid males and females backcrossed to parentals. Both recombinant and nonrecombinant backcross hybrids showed a decline in fitness correlated with population divergence, indicating that segregation among chromosomes contributes to the breakup of coadaptation. Although there was no difference in mean fitness between the two backcross types, recombinational backcrosses showed greater variance for fitness than nonrecombinational backcrosses, suggesting that the breakup of parental gene ombinations within chromosomes has both beneficial and detrimental effects.

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