Dec 27, 2016

Evolution in eggs and phases: experimental evolution of fecundity and reproductive timing in Caenorhabditis elegans

Royal Society Open Science
Bradly Alicea


To examine the role of natural selection in fecundity in a variety of Caenorhabditis elegans genetic backgrounds, we used an experimental evolution protocol to evolve 14 distinct genetic strains over 15-20 generations. We were able to generate 790 distinct genealogies, which provided information on both the effects of natural selection and the evolvability of each strain. Among these genotypes are a wild-type (N2) and a collection of mutants with targeted mutations in the daf-c, daf-d and AMPK pathways. Differences are observed in reproductive fitness along with related changes in reproductive timing. The majority of selective effects on fecundity occur during the first few generations of evolution, while the negative selection for reproductive timing occurs on longer time scales. In addition, positive selection on fecundity results in positive and negative strain-dependent selection on reproductive timing. A derivative of population size per generation called reproductive carry-over (RCO) may be informative in terms of developmental selection. While these findings transcend mutations in a specific gene, changes in the RCO measure may nevertheless be products of selection. In conclusion, the broader implications of these findin...Continue Reading

  • References25
  • Citations1


  • References25
  • Citations1


Mentioned in this Paper

Biochemical Pathway
Caenorhabditis elegans
PRKAA2 gene
Mutant Proteins
Genetic Pedigree
[acetyl-CoA Carboxylase] Kinase Activity

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