Nov 7, 2018

Rate variation in the evolution of non-coding DNA associated with social evolution in bees

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Benjamin ER RubinSarah D Kocher


The evolutionary origins of eusociality represent increases in complexity from individual to caste-based, group reproduction. These behavioral transitions have been hypothesized to go hand-in-hand with an increased ability to regulate when and where genes are expressed. Bees have convergently evolved eusociality up to five times, providing a framework to test this hypothesis. To examine potential links between putative gene regulatory elements and social evolution, we compare alignable, non-coding sequences in eleven diverse bee species, encompassing three independent origins of reproductive division of labor and two elaborations of eusocial complexity. We find that rates of evolution in a number of non-coding sequences correlate with key social transitions in bees. Interestingly, while we find little evidence for convergent rate changes associated with independent origins of social behavior, a number of molecular pathways exhibit convergent rate changes in conjunction with subsequent elaborations of social organization. We also present evidence that many novel non-coding regions may have been recruited alongside the origin of sociality in corbiculate bees; these loci could represent gene regulatory elements associated with div...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

Apis mellifera
Biochemical Pathway
Entire Nervous System
Cell Development
Nervous System Structure
Cellular Component Organization
Base Sequence

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