Sep 10, 2010

Effects of inbreeding on aversive learning in Drosophila

Journal of Evolutionary Biology
Virginie NepouxTadeusz J Kawecki

Abstract

Inbreeding adversely affects life history traits as well as various other fitness-related traits, but its effect on cognitive traits remains largely unexplored, despite their importance to fitness of many animals under natural conditions. We studied the effects of inbreeding on aversive learning (avoidance of an odour previously associated with mechanical shock) in multiple inbred lines of Drosophila melanogaster derived from a natural population through up to 12 generations of sib mating. Whereas the strongly inbred lines after 12 generations of inbreeding (0.75<F<0.93) consistently showed reduced egg-to-adult viability (on average by 28%), the reduction in learning performance varied among assays (average=18% reduction), being most pronounced for intermediate conditioning intensity. Furthermore, moderately inbred lines (F=0.38) showed no detectable decline in learning performance, but still had reduced egg-to-adult viability, which indicates that overall inbreeding effects on learning are mild. Learning performance varied among strongly inbred lines, indicating the presence of segregating variance for learning in the base population. However, the learning performance of some inbred lines matched that of outbred flies, support...Continue Reading

  • References60
  • Citations5

References

Mentioned in this Paper

Avoidance Learning
Inbred Strain
Survival Analysis
Drosophila
Odors
Diptera
Sib Mating
Psathyrella
Drosophila
Alleles

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