A General Model for Estimating Macroevolutionary Landscapes

Systematic Biology
Florian C BoucherJosef C Uyeda

Abstract

The evolution of quantitative characters over long timescales is often studied using stochastic diffusion models. The current toolbox available to students of macroevolution is however limited to two main models: Brownian motion and the Ornstein-Uhlenbeck process, plus some of their extensions. Here, we present a very general model for inferring the dynamics of quantitative characters evolving under both random diffusion and deterministic forces of any possible shape and strength, which can accommodate interesting evolutionary scenarios like directional trends, disruptive selection, or macroevolutionary landscapes with multiple peaks. This model is based on a general partial differential equation widely used in statistical mechanics: the Fokker-Planck equation, also known in population genetics as the Kolmogorov forward equation. We thus call the model FPK, for Fokker-Planck-Kolmogorov. We first explain how this model can be used to describe macroevolutionary landscapes over which quantitative traits evolve and, more importantly, we detail how it can be fitted to empirical data. Using simulations, we show that the model has good behavior both in terms of discrimination from alternative models and in terms of parameter inference...Continue Reading

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References

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Citations

Jul 25, 2018·Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution·C Tristan StaytonNicole M Nisivoccia
Mar 2, 2019·Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution·C Tristan Stayton
Apr 28, 2018·Systematic Biology·Josef C UyedaMatthew W Pennell
Jul 2, 2020·Ecology and Evolution·Nicolai M NürkMichael D Pirie
Apr 1, 2018·The New Phytologist·Amy E ZanneJosef C Uyeda
Jun 28, 2020·Integrative and Comparative Biology·P David Polly
Jul 19, 2020·Systematic Biology·Pablo DuchenDaniele Silvestro
Nov 24, 2019·Journal of Theoretical Biology·Pablo DuchenNicolas Salamin
Apr 1, 2021·Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution·Josef C UyedaMatthew W Pennell
Mar 31, 2021·Evolution; International Journal of Organic Evolution·Nicolás Mongiardino Koch
May 6, 2021·American Journal of Botany·Barbara M Neto-BradleyMatthew W Pennell

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