Category Archives: mutation

The why’s of sex

Sex isn’t quite what it seems – while superficially wasteful in an evolutionary sense (why inherit on only one half of your genes, when you can inherit all of them asexually, or why waste resources in mating when you don’t … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, evolution, genomics, mutation, natural history, next generation sequencing, population genetics, selection, theory, yeast | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

A different perspective on genetic architecture

As an ecological geneticist, I’m constantly reminded how much we don’t understand about the genetic nature of adaptive variation. Sure, we have lots of examples of genes/pathways/regions that seem to be responsible for adaptation, but we don’t really know if … Continue reading

Posted in association genetics, evolution, genomics, mutation, quantitative genetics, theory | Leave a comment

The Neanderthal admixture plot thickens…

Previous studies of archaic admixture from Altai Neanderthals and Denisovans into modern humans outside of Africa have put forth several lines of evidence for gene flow from Neanderthals into common ancestors of Eurasian populations, from Denisovans into ancestors of modern … Continue reading

Posted in bioinformatics, evolution, genomics, mutation, natural history, next generation sequencing, Paleogenomics, population genetics, speciation | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

An evolutionary cycle …

Rescan, Lenormand and Roze (2016) recently published new models on the evolution of life cycles in The American Naturalist. Most animals and protists have diploid life cycles in which the haploid stage is reduced to a single-celled gamete. Other organisms, such … Continue reading

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Sweptaway – Part 1

Brace yourselves for a series of new posts on selection, especially with articles from the special Molecular Ecology issue on “Detecting selection in natural populations: making sense of genome scans and towards alternative solutions” starting to roll out! Selective sweeps … Continue reading

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Selection scans, and the genomics of adaptive/maladaptive introgression

Natural selection, and the adaptive evolution of hybrid reproductive incompatibilities post divergence are known to be major drivers of speciation. At the phenotype level, these manifest as fitness differences between introgressing populations. At the genomic level, speciation “genes” or “islands” … Continue reading

Posted in adaptation, Coevolution, evolution, genomics, Molecular Ecology, the journal, mutation, natural history, population genetics, selection, speciation, theory | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

What do with all those pesky mtDNA reads in your NGS experiment

Have you ever noticed how many reads from your high throughput sequencing project map to the tiny fraction of your genome that is the mitochondrial genome (mtDNA)? Pretty much any NGS experiment (e.g., RNA-seq, DNA-seq, capture-based sequencing) leave you with … Continue reading

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Sexual selection and population fitness

Sexual selection or non-random mate choice acts to ‘filter’ out less competitive/desirable phenotypes from a population. In the presence of small effect mutation loads, i.e. small fitness differences between a mutation-free population, and one with persistent deleterious mutations, sexual selection … Continue reading

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Grasping gorgonians

A recent issue of Heredity focused on the brave new world of environmental genomics. After highlighting the special issue, I started chatting to one of the contributors, Eric Pante and became interested in his work on gorgonians. Eric and his co-authors explored the … Continue reading

Posted in bioinformatics, Coevolution, evolution, genomics, mutation, phylogenetics | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Quantifying risks of consanguineous mating in humans

The efficacy of selection in purging a deleterious mutation from a randomly mating population depends on numerous factors, including dominance effects of alleles – see my previous posts. Simplistically, most new mutations are expected to be heterozygotic, and be purged … Continue reading

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