Mar 25, 2020

The evolution of suppressed recombination between sex chromosomes by chromosomal inversions

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Colin Olito, J. K. Abbott


The idea that sex-differences in selection drive the evolution of suppressed recombination between sex chromosomes is well-developed in population genetics. Yet, despite a now classic body of theory, empirical evidence that sexual antagonism drives the evolution of recombination suppression remains meagre and alternative hypotheses underdeveloped. We investigate whether the length of evolutionary strata formed by chromosomal inversions that expand the non-recombining sex determining region (SDR) on recombining sex chromosomes can offer an informative signature of whether, and how, selection influenced their fixation. We develop population genetic models that determine how the length of a chromosomal inversion that expands the SDR affects its fixation probability for three categories of inversions: (i) neutral, (ii) directly beneficial (i.e., due to breakpoint or position effects), and (iii) indirectly beneficial (especially those capturing sexually antagonistic loci). Our models predict that neutral inversions should leave behind a unique signature of large evolutionary strata, and that it will often be difficult or impossible to distinguish between smaller strata created by directly or indirectly beneficial inversions. An int...Continue Reading

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