Daphnia, Mutations, and Diseases.. oh my!

Posted by Becky:

Here’s a spiffy article I came across last week all the way from the University of Toronto. I can’t seem to link the article directly, so sorry about that!

The effect of pathogens on selection against deleterious mutations in Drosophila melanogaster

J A D E N E A . Y O U N G , C H R I S T O P H E R P . Y O U R T H & A N E I L F . A G R A W A L

Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada


In natural populations, fitness is reduced by both deleterious mutations and parasites. Few studies have examined interactions between these two factors, particularly at the level of individual genes. We examined how the presence of a bacterial pathogen, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, affected the selection against each of eight deleterious mutations in Drosophila melanogaster. We found that mutations tended to become more deleterious in the presence of disease. This increase in the average selection was primarily due to three genes with the

remainder showing little evidence of change.

( Young et al.)


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