May 16, 2013

Genomic architecture of adaptive color pattern divergence and convergence in Heliconius butterflies

Genome Research
Megan A SuppleBrian Counterman

Abstract

Identifying the genetic changes driving adaptive variation in natural populations is key to understanding the origins of biodiversity. The mosaic of mimetic wing patterns in Heliconius butterflies makes an excellent system for exploring adaptive variation using next-generation sequencing. In this study, we use a combination of techniques to annotate the genomic interval modulating red color pattern variation, identify a narrow region responsible for adaptive divergence and convergence in Heliconius wing color patterns, and explore the evolutionary history of these adaptive alleles. We use whole genome resequencing from four hybrid zones between divergent color pattern races of Heliconius erato and two hybrid zones of the co-mimic Heliconius melpomene to examine genetic variation across 2.2 Mb of a partial reference sequence. In the intergenic region near optix, the gene previously shown to be responsible for the complex red pattern variation in Heliconius, population genetic analyses identify a shared 65-kb region of divergence that includes several sites perfectly associated with phenotype within each species. This region likely contains multiple cis-regulatory elements that control discrete expression domains of optix. The pa...Continue Reading

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Citations

Mentioned in this Paper

Genetic Drift
Conserved Synteny
Study
KC469892
Conserved Sequence
Zone
Patterns
Genome
Genes
Likelihood Functions

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