May 9, 2014

Persistence of a Wolbachia-driven sex ratio bias in an island population of Eurema butterflies

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Josep M ComeronMasashi Nomura

Abstract

Prevalence of maternally inherited sex-ratio-distorting endosymbionts such as Wolbachia may have profound effects on reproduction and behaviour and can also select for nuclear suppressors in insect populations. In the butterfly Eurema mandarina , a Wolbachia strain w Fem induces female drive, wherein all the offspring develop as female without any sibling lethality. We monitored an island population of E. mandarina , which comprises w Fem-positive females, w Fem-negative females and w Fem-negative males, from 2005 to 2017. Despite some fluctuations, w Fem appeared to be maintained for at least 12 years at a high frequency in the population, resulting in a female-biased population with a considerable number of virgin females. Because there was no evidence of suppressors against sex ratio distortion, the mechanism acting against increase/fixation of w Fem infection, which would otherwise lead to the population extinction, would be either the constant immigration of w Fem-negative females or the fitness cost of w Fem. Suggestively, the wing size was slightly smaller in w Fem-positive females than in w Fem-negative females. Additionally, the discrepancies observed between sex ratios of captive individuals and sex ratios deduced fro...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Gene Polymorphism
Genome-Wide Association Study
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Genome
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Recombination, Genetic
Drosophila
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Baller-Gerold Syndrome
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