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Sample records for adaptive molecular evolution

  1. Adaptive evolution of molecular phenotypes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Held, Torsten; Nourmohammad, Armita; Lässig, Michael

    2014-09-01

    Molecular phenotypes link genomic information with organismic functions, fitness, and evolution. Quantitative traits are complex phenotypes that depend on multiple genomic loci. In this paper, we study the adaptive evolution of a quantitative trait under time-dependent selection, which arises from environmental changes or through fitness interactions with other co-evolving phenotypes. We analyze a model of trait evolution under mutations and genetic drift in a single-peak fitness seascape. The fitness peak performs a constrained random walk in the trait amplitude, which determines the time-dependent trait optimum in a given population. We derive analytical expressions for the distribution of the time-dependent trait divergence between populations and of the trait diversity within populations. Based on this solution, we develop a method to infer adaptive evolution of quantitative traits. Specifically, we show that the ratio of the average trait divergence and the diversity is a universal function of evolutionary time, which predicts the stabilizing strength and the driving rate of the fitness seascape. From an information-theoretic point of view, this function measures the macro-evolutionary entropy in a population ensemble, which determines the predictability of the evolutionary process. Our solution also quantifies two key characteristics of adapting populations: the cumulative fitness flux, which measures the total amount of adaptation, and the adaptive load, which is the fitness cost due to a population's lag behind the fitness peak.

  2. Molecular evolution and thermal adaptation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, Peiqiu

    2011-12-01

    In this thesis, we address problems in molecular evolution, thermal adaptation, and the kinetics of adaptation of bacteria and viruses to elevated environmental temperatures. We use a nearly neutral fitness model where the replication speed of an organism is proportional to the copy number of folded proteins. Our model reproduces the distribution of stabilities of natural proteins in excellent agreement with experiment. We find that species with high mutation rates tend to have less stable proteins compared to species with low mutation rate. We found that a broad distribution of protein stabilities observed in the model and in experiment is the key determinant of thermal response for viruses and bacteria. Our results explain most of the earlier experimental observations: striking asymmetry of thermal response curves, the absence of evolutionary trade-off which was expected but not found in experiments, correlation between denaturation temperature for several protein families and the Optimal Growth Temperature (OGT) of their carrier organisms, and proximity of bacterial or viral OGTs to their evolutionary temperatures. Our theory quantitatively and with high accuracy described thermal response curves for 35 bacterial species. The model also addresses the key to adaptation is in weak-link genes (WLG), which encode least thermodynamically stable essential proteins in the proteome. We observe, as in experiment, a two-stage adaptation process. The first stage is a Luria-Delbruck type of selection, whereby rare WLG alleles, whose proteins are more stable than WLG proteins of the majority of the population (either due to standing genetic variation or due to an early acquired mutation), rapidly rise to fixation. The second stage constitutes subsequent slow accumulation of mutations in an adapted population. As adaptation progresses, selection regime changes from positive to neutral: Selection coefficient of beneficial mutations scales as a negative power of number of

  3. Sex speeds adaptation by altering the dynamics of molecular evolution.

    PubMed

    McDonald, Michael J; Rice, Daniel P; Desai, Michael M

    2016-03-10

    Sex and recombination are pervasive throughout nature despite their substantial costs. Understanding the evolutionary forces that maintain these phenomena is a central challenge in biology. One longstanding hypothesis argues that sex is beneficial because recombination speeds adaptation. Theory has proposed several distinct population genetic mechanisms that could underlie this advantage. For example, sex can promote the fixation of beneficial mutations either by alleviating interference competition (the Fisher-Muller effect) or by separating them from deleterious load (the ruby in the rubbish effect). Previous experiments confirm that sex can increase the rate of adaptation, but these studies did not observe the evolutionary dynamics that drive this effect at the genomic level. Here we present the first, to our knowledge, comparison between the sequence-level dynamics of adaptation in experimental sexual and asexual Saccharomyces cerevisiae populations, which allows us to identify the specific mechanisms by which sex speeds adaptation. We find that sex alters the molecular signatures of evolution by changing the spectrum of mutations that fix, and confirm theoretical predictions that it does so by alleviating clonal interference. We also show that substantially deleterious mutations hitchhike to fixation in adapting asexual populations. In contrast, recombination prevents such mutations from fixing. Our results demonstrate that sex both speeds adaptation and alters its molecular signature by allowing natural selection to more efficiently sort beneficial from deleterious mutations.

  4. Sex speeds adaptation by altering the dynamics of molecular evolution.

    PubMed

    McDonald, Michael J; Rice, Daniel P; Desai, Michael M

    2016-03-10

    Sex and recombination are pervasive throughout nature despite their substantial costs. Understanding the evolutionary forces that maintain these phenomena is a central challenge in biology. One longstanding hypothesis argues that sex is beneficial because recombination speeds adaptation. Theory has proposed several distinct population genetic mechanisms that could underlie this advantage. For example, sex can promote the fixation of beneficial mutations either by alleviating interference competition (the Fisher-Muller effect) or by separating them from deleterious load (the ruby in the rubbish effect). Previous experiments confirm that sex can increase the rate of adaptation, but these studies did not observe the evolutionary dynamics that drive this effect at the genomic level. Here we present the first, to our knowledge, comparison between the sequence-level dynamics of adaptation in experimental sexual and asexual Saccharomyces cerevisiae populations, which allows us to identify the specific mechanisms by which sex speeds adaptation. We find that sex alters the molecular signatures of evolution by changing the spectrum of mutations that fix, and confirm theoretical predictions that it does so by alleviating clonal interference. We also show that substantially deleterious mutations hitchhike to fixation in adapting asexual populations. In contrast, recombination prevents such mutations from fixing. Our results demonstrate that sex both speeds adaptation and alters its molecular signature by allowing natural selection to more efficiently sort beneficial from deleterious mutations. PMID:26909573

  5. Sex Speeds Adaptation by Altering the Dynamics of Molecular Evolution

    PubMed Central

    McDonald, Michael J.; Rice, Daniel P.; Desai, Michael M.

    2016-01-01

    Sex and recombination are pervasive throughout nature despite their substantial costs1. Understanding the evolutionary forces that maintain these phenomena is a central challenge in biology2,3. One longstanding hypothesis argues that sex is beneficial because recombination speeds adaptation4. Theory has proposed a number of distinct population genetic mechanisms that could underlie this advantage. For example, sex can promote the fixation of beneficial mutations either by alleviating interference competition (the Fisher-Muller effect)5,6 or by separating them from deleterious load (the ruby in the rubbish effect)7,8. Previous experiments confirm that sex can increase the rate of adaptation9–17, but these studies did not observe the evolutionary dynamics that drive this effect at the genomic level. Here, we present the first comparison between the sequence-level dynamics of adaptation in experimental sexual and asexual populations, which allows us to identify the specific mechanisms by which sex speeds adaptation. We find that sex alters the molecular signatures of evolution by changing the spectrum of mutations that fix, and confirm theoretical predictions that it does so by alleviating clonal interference. We also show that substantially deleterious mutations hitchhike to fixation in adapting asexual populations. In contrast, recombination prevents such mutations from fixing. Our results demonstrate that sex both speeds adaptation and alters its molecular signature by allowing natural selection to more efficiently sort beneficial from deleterious mutations. PMID:26909573

  6. The Coevolution of Phycobilisomes: Molecular Structure Adapting to Functional Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Shi, Fei; Qin, Song; Wang, Yin-Chu

    2011-01-01

    Phycobilisome is the major light-harvesting complex in cyanobacteria and red alga. It consists of phycobiliproteins and their associated linker peptides which play key role in absorption and unidirectional transfer of light energy and the stability of the whole complex system, respectively. Former researches on the evolution among PBPs and linker peptides had mainly focused on the phylogenetic analysis and selective evolution. Coevolution is the change that the conformation of one residue is interrupted by mutation and a compensatory change selected for in its interacting partner. Here, coevolutionary analysis of allophycocyanin, phycocyanin, and phycoerythrin and covariation analysis of linker peptides were performed. Coevolution analyses reveal that these sites are significantly correlated, showing strong evidence of the functional and structural importance of interactions among these residues. According to interprotein coevolution analysis, less interaction was found between PBPs and linker peptides. Our results also revealed the correlations between the coevolution and adaptive selection in PBS were not directly related, but probably demonstrated by the sites coupled under physical-chemical interactions. PMID:21904470

  7. Advances on molecular mechanism of the adaptive evolution of Chiroptera (bats).

    PubMed

    Yunpeng, Liang; Li, Yu

    2015-01-01

    As the second biggest animal group in mammals, Chiroptera (bats) demonstrates many unique adaptive features in terms of flight, echolocation, auditory acuity, feeding habit, hibernation and immune defense, providing an excellent system for understanding the molecular basis of how organisms adapt to the living environments encountered. In this review, we summarize the researches on the molecular mechanism of the adaptive evolution of Chiroptera, especially the recent researches at the genome levels, suggesting a far more complex evolutionary pattern and functional diversity than previously thought. In the future, along with the increasing numbers of Chiroptera species genomes available, new evolutionary patterns and functional divergence will be revealed, which can promote the further understanding of this animal group and the molecular mechanism of adaptive evolution.

  8. Molecular evolution of rbcL in three gymnosperm families: identifying adaptive and coevolutionary patterns

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    forward the conclusion that this evolutionary scenario has been possible through a complex interplay between adaptive mutations, often structurally destabilizing, and compensatory mutations. Our results unearth patterns of evolution that have likely optimized the Rubisco activity and uncover mutational dynamics useful in the molecular engineering of enzymatic activities. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Prof. Christian Blouin (nominated by Dr W Ford Doolittle), Dr Endre Barta (nominated by Dr Sandor Pongor), and Dr Nicolas Galtier. PMID:21639885

  9. Adaptive molecular evolution of a defence gene in sexual but not functionally asexual evening primroses.

    PubMed

    Hersch-Green, E I; Myburg, H; Johnson, M T J

    2012-08-01

    Theory predicts that sexual reproduction provides evolutionary advantages over asexual reproduction by reducing mutational load and increasing adaptive potential. Here, we test the latter prediction in the context of plant defences against pathogens because pathogens frequently reduce plant fitness and drive the evolution of plant defences. Specifically, we ask whether sexual evening primrose plant lineages (Onagraceae) have faster rates of adaptive molecular evolution and altered gene expression of a class I chitinase, a gene implicated in defence against pathogens, than functionally asexual evening primrose lineages. We found that the ratio of amino acid to silent substitutions (K(a) /K(s) = 0.19 vs. 0.11 for sexual and asexual lineages, respectively), the number of sites identified to be under positive selection (four vs. zero for sexual and asexual lineages, respectively) and the expression of chitinase were all higher in sexual than in asexual lineages. Our results are congruent with the conclusion that a loss of sexual recombination and segregation in the Onagraceae negatively affects adaptive structural and potentially regulatory evolution of a plant defence protein.

  10. Molecular characterization of insulin from squamate reptiles reveals sequence diversity and possible adaptive evolution.

    PubMed

    Yamagishi, Genki; Yoshida, Ayaka; Kobayashi, Aya; Park, Min Kyun

    2016-01-01

    The Squamata are the most adaptive and prosperous group among ectothermic amniotes, reptiles, due to their species-richness and geographically wide habitat. Although the molecular mechanisms underlying their prosperity remain largely unknown, unique features have been reported from hormones that regulate energy metabolism. Insulin, a central anabolic hormone, is one such hormone, as its roles and effectiveness in regulation of blood glucose levels remain to be examined in squamates. In the present study, cDNAs coding for insulin were isolated from multiple species that represent various groups of squamates. The deduced amino acid sequences showed a high degree of divergence, with four lineages showing obviously higher number of amino acid substitutions than most of vertebrates, from teleosts to mammals. Among 18 sites presented to comprise the two receptor binding surfaces (one with 12 sites and the other with 6 sites), substitutions were observed in 13 sites. Among them was the substitution of HisB10, which results in the loss of the ability to hexamerize. Furthermore, three of these substitutions were reported to increase mitogenicity in human analogues. These substitutions were also reported from insulin of hystricomorph rodents and agnathan fishes, whose mitogenic potency have been shown to be increased. The estimated value of the non-synonymous-to-synonymous substitution ratio (ω) for the Squamata clade was larger than those of the other reptiles and aves. Even higher values were estimated for several lineages among squamates. These results, together with the regulatory mechanisms of digestion and nutrient assimilation in squamates, suggested a possible adaptive process through the molecular evolution of squamate INS. Further studies on the roles of insulin, in relation to the physiological and ecological traits of squamate species, will provide an insight into the molecular mechanisms that have led to the adaptivity and prosperity of squamates.

  11. Targeted metagenomics unveils the molecular basis for adaptive evolution of enzymes to their environment

    PubMed Central

    Suenaga, Hikaru

    2015-01-01

    Microorganisms have a wonderful ability to adapt rapidly to new or altered environmental conditions. Enzymes are the basis of metabolism in all living organisms and, therefore, enzyme adaptation plays a crucial role in the adaptation of microorganisms. Comparisons of homology and parallel beneficial mutations in an enzyme family provide valuable hints of how an enzyme adapted to an ecological system; consequently, a series of enzyme collections is required to investigate enzyme evolution. Targeted metagenomics is a promising tool for the construction of enzyme pools and for studying the adaptive evolution of enzymes. This perspective article presents a summary of targeted metagenomic approaches useful for this purpose. PMID:26441940

  12. Adaptive molecular evolution in the opsin genes of rapidly speciating cichlid species.

    PubMed

    Spady, Tyrone C; Seehausen, Ole; Loew, Ellis R; Jordan, Rebecca C; Kocher, Thomas D; Carleton, Karen L

    2005-06-01

    Cichlid fish inhabit a diverse range of environments that vary in the spectral content of light available for vision. These differences should result in adaptive selective pressure on the genes involved in visual sensitivity, the opsin genes. This study examines the evidence for differential adaptive molecular evolution in East African cichlid opsin genes due to gross differences in environmental light conditions. First, we characterize the selective regime experienced by cichlid opsin genes using a likelihood ratio test format, comparing likelihood models with different constraints on the relative rates of amino acid substitution, across sites. Second, we compare turbid and clear lineages to determine if there is evidence of differences in relative rates of substitution. Third, we present evidence of functional diversification and its relationship to the photic environment among cichlid opsin genes. We report statistical evidence of positive selection in all cichlid opsin genes, except short wavelength-sensitive 1 and short wavelength-sensitive 2b. In all genes predicted to be under positive selection, except short wavelength-sensitive 2a, we find differences in selective pressure between turbid and clear lineages. Potential spectral tuning sites are variable among all cichlid opsin genes; however, patterns of substitution consistent with photic environment-driven evolution of opsin genes are observed only for short wavelength-sensitive 1 opsin genes. This study identifies a number of promising candidate-tuning sites for future study by site-directed mutagenesis. This work also begins to demonstrate the molecular evolutionary dynamics of cichlid visual sensitivity and its relationship to the photic environment.

  13. Adaptive Molecular Evolution of PHYE in Primulina, a Karst Cave Plant

    PubMed Central

    Tao, Junjie; Qi, Qingwen; Kang, Ming; Huang, Hongwen

    2015-01-01

    Limestone Karst areas possess high levels of biodiversity and endemism. Primulina is a typical component of Karst endemic floras. The high species richness and wide distribution in various Karst microenvironments make the genus an idea model for studying speciation and local adaptation. In this study, we obtained 10 full-length sequences of the phytochrome PHYE from available transcriptome resources of Primulina and amplified partial sequences of PHYE from the genomic DNA of 74 Primulina species. Then, we used maximum-likelihood approaches to explore molecular evolution of PHYE in this Karst cave plant. The results showed that PHYE was dominated by purifying selection in both data sets, and two sites were identified as potentially under positive selection. Furthermore, the ω ratio varies greatly among different functional domains of PHYE and among different species lineages. These results suggest that potential positive selection in PHYE might have played an important role in the adaption of Primulina to heterogeneous light environments in Karst regions, and different species lineages might have been subjected to different selective pressures. PMID:26030408

  14. Adaptive Molecular Evolution of PHYE in Primulina, a Karst Cave Plant.

    PubMed

    Tao, Junjie; Qi, Qingwen; Kang, Ming; Huang, Hongwen

    2015-01-01

    Limestone Karst areas possess high levels of biodiversity and endemism. Primulina is a typical component of Karst endemic floras. The high species richness and wide distribution in various Karst microenvironments make the genus an idea model for studying speciation and local adaptation. In this study, we obtained 10 full-length sequences of the phytochrome PHYE from available transcriptome resources of Primulina and amplified partial sequences of PHYE from the genomic DNA of 74 Primulina species. Then, we used maximum-likelihood approaches to explore molecular evolution of PHYE in this Karst cave plant. The results showed that PHYE was dominated by purifying selection in both data sets, and two sites were identified as potentially under positive selection. Furthermore, the ω ratio varies greatly among different functional domains of PHYE and among different species lineages. These results suggest that potential positive selection in PHYE might have played an important role in the adaption of Primulina to heterogeneous light environments in Karst regions, and different species lineages might have been subjected to different selective pressures.

  15. Dolphin genome provides evidence for adaptive evolution of nervous system genes and a molecular rate slowdown

    PubMed Central

    McGowen, Michael R.; Grossman, Lawrence I.; Wildman, Derek E.

    2012-01-01

    Cetaceans (dolphins and whales) have undergone a radical transformation from the original mammalian bodyplan. In addition, some cetaceans have evolved large brains and complex cognitive capacities. We compared approximately 10 000 protein-coding genes culled from the bottlenose dolphin genome with nine other genomes to reveal molecular correlates of the remarkable phenotypic features of these aquatic mammals. Evolutionary analyses demonstrated that the overall synonymous substitution rate in dolphins has slowed compared with other studied mammals, and is within the range of primates and elephants. We also discovered 228 genes potentially under positive selection (dN/dS > 1) in the dolphin lineage. Twenty-seven of these genes are associated with the nervous system, including those related to human intellectual disabilities, synaptic plasticity and sleep. In addition, genes expressed in the mitochondrion have a significantly higher mean dN/dS ratio in the dolphin lineage than others examined, indicating evolution in energy metabolism. We encountered selection in other genes potentially related to cetacean adaptations such as glucose and lipid metabolism, dermal and lung development, and the cardiovascular system. This study underlines the parallel molecular trajectory of cetaceans with other mammalian groups possessing large brains. PMID:22740643

  16. Evolution of the fruit endocarp: molecular mechanisms underlying adaptations in seed protection and dispersal strategies

    PubMed Central

    Dardick, Chris; Callahan, Ann M.

    2014-01-01

    Plant evolution is largely driven by adaptations in seed protection and dispersal strategies that allow diversification into new niches. This is evident by the tremendous variation in flowering and fruiting structures present both across and within different plant lineages. Within a single plant family a staggering variety of fruit types can be found such as fleshy fruits including berries, pomes, and drupes and dry fruit structures like achenes, capsules, and follicles. What are the evolutionary mechanisms that enable such dramatic shifts to occur in a relatively short period of time? This remains a fundamental question of plant biology today. On the surface it seems that these extreme differences in form and function must be the consequence of very different developmental programs that require unique sets of genes. Yet as we begin to decipher the molecular and genetic basis underlying fruit form it is becoming apparent that simple genetic changes in key developmental regulatory genes can have profound anatomical effects. In this review, we discuss recent advances in understanding the molecular mechanisms of fruit endocarp tissue differentiation that have contributed to species diversification within three plant lineages. PMID:25009543

  17. Tracking adaptive evolution in the structure, function and molecular phylogeny of haemoglobin in non-Antarctic notothenioid fish species

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verde, Cinzia; Parisi, Elio; di Prisco, Guido

    2006-04-01

    With the notable exception of Antarctic icefishes, haemoglobin (Hb) is present in all vertebrates. In polar fish, Hb evolution has included adaptations with implications at the biochemical, physiological and molecular levels. Cold adaptation has been shown to be also linked to small changes in primary structure and post-translational modifications in proteins, including hydrophobic remodelling and increased flexibility. A wealth of knowledge is available on the oxygen-transport system of fish inhabiting Antarctic waters, but very little is known on the structure and function of Hb of non-Antarctic notothenioid fishes. The comparison of the biochemical and physiological adaptations between cold-adapted and non-cold-adapted species is a powerful tool to understand whether (and to what extent) extreme environments require specific adaptations or simply select for phenotypically different life styles. This study focuses on structure, function and molecular phylogeny of Hb in Antarctic and non-Antarctic notothenioid fishes. The rationale is to use the primary structure of Hb as tool of choice to gain insight into the pathways of the evolution history of α and β globins of notothenioids and also as a basis for reconstructing the phylogenetic relationships among Antarctic and non-Antarctic species.

  18. Workshop on Molecular Evolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cummings, Michael P.

    2004-01-01

    Molecular evolution has become the nexus of many areas of biological research. It both brings together and enriches such areas as biochemistry, molecular biology, microbiology, population genetics, systematics, developmental biology, genomics, bioinformatics, in vitro evolution, and molecular ecology. The Workshop provides an important contribution to these fields in that it promotes interdisciplinary research and interaction, and thus provides a glue that sticks together disparate fields. Due to the wide range of fields addressed by the study of molecular evolution, it is difficult to offer a comprehensive course in a university setting. It is rare for a single institution to maintain expertise in all necessary areas. In contrast, the Workshop is uniquely able to provide necessary breadth and depth by utilizing a large number of faculty with appropriate expertise. Furthermore, the flexible nature of the Workshop allows for rapid adaptation to changes in the dynamic field of molecular evolution. For example, the 2003 Workshop included recently emergent research areas of molecular evolution of development and genomics.

  19. Collembolan Transcriptomes Highlight Molecular Evolution of Hexapods and Provide Clues on the Adaptation to Terrestrial Life

    PubMed Central

    Faddeeva, A.; Studer, R. A.; Kraaijeveld, K.; Sie, D.; Ylstra, B.; Mariën, J.; op den Camp, H. J. M.; Datema, E.; den Dunnen, J. T.; van Straalen, N. M.; Roelofs, D.

    2015-01-01

    Background Collembola (springtails) represent a soil-living lineage of hexapods in between insects and crustaceans. Consequently, their genomes may hold key information on the early processes leading to evolution of Hexapoda from a crustacean ancestor. Method We assembled and annotated transcriptomes of the Collembola Folsomia candida and Orchesella cincta, and performed comparative analysis with protein-coding gene sequences of three crustaceans and three insects to identify adaptive signatures associated with the evolution of hexapods within the pancrustacean clade. Results Assembly of the springtail transcriptomes resulted in 37,730 transcripts with predicted open reading frames for F. candida and 32,154 for O. cincta, of which 34.2% were functionally annotated for F. candida and 38.4% for O. cincta. Subsequently, we predicted orthologous clusters among eight species and applied the branch-site test to detect episodic positive selection in the Hexapoda and Collembola lineages. A subset of 250 genes showed significant positive selection along the Hexapoda branch and 57 in the Collembola lineage. Gene Ontology categories enriched in these genes include metabolism, stress response (i.e. DNA repair, immune response), ion transport, ATP metabolism, regulation and development-related processes (i.e. eye development, neurological development). Conclusions We suggest that the identified gene families represent processes that have played a key role in the divergence of hexapods within the pancrustacean clade that eventually evolved into the most species-rich group of all animals, the hexapods. Furthermore, some adaptive signatures in collembolans may provide valuable clues to understand evolution of hexapods on land. PMID:26075903

  20. Planetary change and biochemical adaptation: molecular evolution of corrinoid and heme biosyntheses.

    PubMed

    Lazcano, Antonio

    2012-04-01

    This review examines the evidence suggesting that the anaerobic biosynthesis of cobalamin (vitamin B12) evolved during early stages of cell evolution and was quickly recruited in the pathway leading to deoxyribonucleotides, the building blocks of DNA genomes. Biochemical evolution preceding the synthesis of the heme group and related molecules is discussed within the framework of geological evolution in which the appearance and accumulation of an oxygen-rich atmosphere stands as one of the major events in the evolution of the planet and the biosphere.

  1. Mistakes and Molecular Evolution.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Trevors, J. T.

    1998-01-01

    Examines the role mistakes play in the molecular evolution of bacteria. Discusses the interacting physical, chemical, and biological factors that cause changes in DNA and play a role in prokaryotic evolution. (DDR)

  2. Genome-wide analysis of adaptive molecular evolution in the carnivorous plant Utricularia gibba.

    PubMed

    Carretero-Paulet, Lorenzo; Chang, Tien-Hao; Librado, Pablo; Ibarra-Laclette, Enrique; Herrera-Estrella, Luis; Rozas, Julio; Albert, Victor A

    2015-01-09

    The genome of the bladderwort Utricularia gibba provides an unparalleled opportunity to uncover the adaptive landscape of an aquatic carnivorous plant with unique phenotypic features such as absence of roots, development of water-filled suction bladders, and a highly ramified branching pattern. Despite its tiny size, the U. gibba genome accommodates approximately as many genes as other plant genomes. To examine the relationship between the compactness of its genome and gene turnover, we compared the U. gibba genome with that of four other eudicot species, defining a total of 17,324 gene families (orthogroups). These families were further classified as either 1) lineage-specific expanded/contracted or 2) stable in size. The U. gibba-expanded families are generically related to three main phenotypic features: 1) trap physiology, 2) key plant morphogenetic/developmental pathways, and 3) response to environmental stimuli, including adaptations to life in aquatic environments. Further scans for signatures of protein functional specialization permitted identification of seven candidate genes with amino acid changes putatively fixed by positive Darwinian selection in the U. gibba lineage. The Arabidopsis orthologs of these genes (AXR, UMAMIT41, IGS, TAR2, SOL1, DEG9, and DEG10) are involved in diverse plant biological functions potentially relevant for U. gibba phenotypic diversification, including 1) auxin metabolism and signal transduction, 2) flowering induction and floral meristem transition, 3) root development, and 4) peptidases. Taken together, our results suggest numerous candidate genes and gene families as interesting targets for further experimental confirmation of their functional and adaptive roles in the U. gibba's unique lifestyle and highly specialized body plan.

  3. Genome-wide analysis of adaptive molecular evolution in the carnivorous plant Utricularia gibba.

    PubMed

    Carretero-Paulet, Lorenzo; Chang, Tien-Hao; Librado, Pablo; Ibarra-Laclette, Enrique; Herrera-Estrella, Luis; Rozas, Julio; Albert, Victor A

    2015-02-01

    The genome of the bladderwort Utricularia gibba provides an unparalleled opportunity to uncover the adaptive landscape of an aquatic carnivorous plant with unique phenotypic features such as absence of roots, development of water-filled suction bladders, and a highly ramified branching pattern. Despite its tiny size, the U. gibba genome accommodates approximately as many genes as other plant genomes. To examine the relationship between the compactness of its genome and gene turnover, we compared the U. gibba genome with that of four other eudicot species, defining a total of 17,324 gene families (orthogroups). These families were further classified as either 1) lineage-specific expanded/contracted or 2) stable in size. The U. gibba-expanded families are generically related to three main phenotypic features: 1) trap physiology, 2) key plant morphogenetic/developmental pathways, and 3) response to environmental stimuli, including adaptations to life in aquatic environments. Further scans for signatures of protein functional specialization permitted identification of seven candidate genes with amino acid changes putatively fixed by positive Darwinian selection in the U. gibba lineage. The Arabidopsis orthologs of these genes (AXR, UMAMIT41, IGS, TAR2, SOL1, DEG9, and DEG10) are involved in diverse plant biological functions potentially relevant for U. gibba phenotypic diversification, including 1) auxin metabolism and signal transduction, 2) flowering induction and floral meristem transition, 3) root development, and 4) peptidases. Taken together, our results suggest numerous candidate genes and gene families as interesting targets for further experimental confirmation of their functional and adaptive roles in the U. gibba's unique lifestyle and highly specialized body plan. PMID:25577200

  4. Genome-Wide Analysis of Adaptive Molecular Evolution in the Carnivorous Plant Utricularia gibba

    PubMed Central

    Librado, Pablo; Ibarra-Laclette, Enrique; Herrera-Estrella, Luis; Rozas, Julio; Albert, Victor A.

    2015-01-01

    The genome of the bladderwort Utricularia gibba provides an unparalleled opportunity to uncover the adaptive landscape of an aquatic carnivorous plant with unique phenotypic features such as absence of roots, development of water-filled suction bladders, and a highly ramified branching pattern. Despite its tiny size, the U. gibba genome accommodates approximately as many genes as other plant genomes. To examine the relationship between the compactness of its genome and gene turnover, we compared the U. gibba genome with that of four other eudicot species, defining a total of 17,324 gene families (orthogroups). These families were further classified as either 1) lineage-specific expanded/contracted or 2) stable in size. The U. gibba-expanded families are generically related to three main phenotypic features: 1) trap physiology, 2) key plant morphogenetic/developmental pathways, and 3) response to environmental stimuli, including adaptations to life in aquatic environments. Further scans for signatures of protein functional specialization permitted identification of seven candidate genes with amino acid changes putatively fixed by positive Darwinian selection in the U. gibba lineage. The Arabidopsis orthologs of these genes (AXR, UMAMIT41, IGS, TAR2, SOL1, DEG9, and DEG10) are involved in diverse plant biological functions potentially relevant for U. gibba phenotypic diversification, including 1) auxin metabolism and signal transduction, 2) flowering induction and floral meristem transition, 3) root development, and 4) peptidases. Taken together, our results suggest numerous candidate genes and gene families as interesting targets for further experimental confirmation of their functional and adaptive roles in the U. gibba’s unique lifestyle and highly specialized body plan. PMID:25577200

  5. Life-history evolution at the molecular level: adaptive amino acid composition of avian vitellogenins

    PubMed Central

    Hughes, Austin L.

    2015-01-01

    Avian genomes typically encode three distinct vitellogenin (VTG) egg yolk proteins (VTG1, VTG2 and VTG3), which arose by gene duplication prior to the most recent common ancestor of birds. Analysis of VTG sequences from 34 avian species in a phylogenetic framework supported the hypothesis that VTG amino acid composition has co-evolved with embryo incubation time. Embryo incubation time was positively correlated with the proportions of dietary essential amino acids (EAAs) in VTG1 and VTG2, and with the proportion of sulfur-containing amino acids in VTG3. These patterns were seen even when only semi-altricial and/or altricial species were considered, suggesting that the duration of embryo incubation is a major selective factor on the amino acid composition of VTGs, rather than developmental mode alone. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that the level of EAAs provided to the egg represents an adaptation to the loss of amino acids through breakdown over the course of incubation and imply that life-history phenotypes and VTG amino acid composition have co-evolved throughout the evolutionary history of birds. PMID:26224713

  6. Combining molecular evolution and environmental genomics to unravel adaptive processes of MHC class IIB diversity in European minnows (Phoxinus phoxinus)

    PubMed Central

    Collin, Helene; Burri, Reto; Comtesse, Fabien; Fumagalli, Luca

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Host–pathogen interactions are a major evolutionary force promoting local adaptation. Genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC) represent unique candidates to investigate evolutionary processes driving local adaptation to parasite communities. The present study aimed at identifying the relative roles of neutral and adaptive processes driving the evolution of MHC class IIB (MHCIIB) genes in natural populations of European minnows (Phoxinus phoxinus). To this end, we isolated and genotyped exon 2 of two MHCIIB gene duplicates (DAB1 and DAB3) and 1′665 amplified fragment length polymorphism (AFLP) markers in nine populations, and characterized local bacterial communities by 16S rDNA barcoding using 454 amplicon sequencing. Both MHCIIB loci exhibited signs of historical balancing selection. Whereas genetic differentiation exceeded that of neutral markers at both loci, the populations' genetic diversities were positively correlated with local pathogen diversities only at DAB3. Overall, our results suggest pathogen-mediated local adaptation in European minnows at both MHCIIB loci. While at DAB1 selection appears to favor different alleles among populations, this is only partially the case in DAB3, which appears to be locally adapted to pathogen communities in terms of genetic diversity. These results provide new insights into the importance of host–pathogen interactions in driving local adaptation in the European minnow, and highlight that the importance of adaptive processes driving MHCIIB gene evolution may differ among duplicates within species, presumably as a consequence of alternative selective regimes or different genomic context. Using next-generation sequencing, the present manuscript identifies the relative roles of neutral and adaptive processes driving the evolution of MHC class IIB (MHCIIB) genes in natural populations of a cyprinid fish: the European minnow (Phoxinus phoxinus). We highlight that the relative importance of neutral

  7. Molecular mechanisms of temperature adaptation.

    PubMed

    Bagriantsev, Sviatoslav N; Gracheva, Elena O

    2015-08-15

    Thermal perception is a fundamental physiological process pertaining to the vast majority of organisms. In vertebrates, environmental temperature is detected by the primary afferents of the somatosensory neurons in the skin, which express a 'choir' of ion channels tuned to detect particular temperatures. Nearly two decades of research have revealed a number of receptor ion channels that mediate the perception of several temperature ranges, but most still remain molecularly orphaned. Yet even within this well-researched realm, most of our knowledge largely pertains to two closely related species of rodents, mice and rats. While these are standard biomedical research models, mice and rats provide a limited perspective to elucidate the general principles that drive somatosensory evolution. In recent years, significant advances have been made in understanding the molecular mechanism of temperature adaptation in evolutionarily distant vertebrates and in organisms with acute thermal sensitivity. These studies have revealed the remarkable versatility of the somatosensory system and highlighted adaptations at the molecular level, which often include changes in biophysical properties of ion channels from the transient receptor potential family. Exploiting non-standard animal models has the potential to provide unexpected insights into general principles of thermosensation and thermoregulation, unachievable using the rodent model alone.

  8. Molecular mechanisms of temperature adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Bagriantsev, Sviatoslav N; Gracheva, Elena O

    2015-01-01

    Thermal perception is a fundamental physiological process pertaining to the vast majority of organisms. In vertebrates, environmental temperature is detected by the primary afferents of the somatosensory neurons in the skin, which express a ‘choir’ of ion channels tuned to detect particular temperatures. Nearly two decades of research have revealed a number of receptor ion channels that mediate the perception of several temperature ranges, but most still remain molecularly orphaned. Yet even within this well-researched realm, most of our knowledge largely pertains to two closely related species of rodents, mice and rats. While these are standard biomedical research models, mice and rats provide a limited perspective to elucidate the general principles that drive somatosensory evolution. In recent years, significant advances have been made in understanding the molecular mechanism of temperature adaptation in evolutionarily distant vertebrates and in organisms with acute thermal sensitivity. These studies have revealed the remarkable versatility of the somatosensory system and highlighted adaptations at the molecular level, which often include changes in biophysical properties of ion channels from the transient receptor potential family. Exploiting non-standard animal models has the potential to provide unexpected insights into general principles of thermosensation and thermoregulation, unachievable using the rodent model alone. PMID:25433072

  9. Molecular mechanisms of temperature adaptation.

    PubMed

    Bagriantsev, Sviatoslav N; Gracheva, Elena O

    2015-08-15

    Thermal perception is a fundamental physiological process pertaining to the vast majority of organisms. In vertebrates, environmental temperature is detected by the primary afferents of the somatosensory neurons in the skin, which express a 'choir' of ion channels tuned to detect particular temperatures. Nearly two decades of research have revealed a number of receptor ion channels that mediate the perception of several temperature ranges, but most still remain molecularly orphaned. Yet even within this well-researched realm, most of our knowledge largely pertains to two closely related species of rodents, mice and rats. While these are standard biomedical research models, mice and rats provide a limited perspective to elucidate the general principles that drive somatosensory evolution. In recent years, significant advances have been made in understanding the molecular mechanism of temperature adaptation in evolutionarily distant vertebrates and in organisms with acute thermal sensitivity. These studies have revealed the remarkable versatility of the somatosensory system and highlighted adaptations at the molecular level, which often include changes in biophysical properties of ion channels from the transient receptor potential family. Exploiting non-standard animal models has the potential to provide unexpected insights into general principles of thermosensation and thermoregulation, unachievable using the rodent model alone. PMID:25433072

  10. Molecular evolution of the hyaluronan synthase 2 gene in mammals: implications for adaptations to the subterranean niche and cancer resistance

    PubMed Central

    Faulkes, Christopher G.; Davies, Kalina T. J.; Rossiter, Stephen J.; Bennett, Nigel C.

    2015-01-01

    The naked mole-rat (NMR) Heterocephalus glaber is a unique and fascinating mammal exhibiting many unusual adaptations to a subterranean lifestyle. The recent discovery of their resistance to cancer and exceptional longevity has opened up new and important avenues of research. Part of this resistance to cancer has been attributed to the fact that NMRs produce a modified form of hyaluronan—a key constituent of the extracellular matrix—that is thought to confer increased elasticity of the skin as an adaptation for living in narrow tunnels. This so-called high molecular mass hyaluronan (HMM-HA) stems from two apparently unique substitutions in the hyaluronan synthase 2 enzyme (HAS2). To test whether other subterranean mammals with similar selection pressures also show molecular adaptation in their HAS2 gene, we sequenced the HAS2 gene for 11 subterranean mammals and closely related species, and combined these with data from 57 other mammals. Comparative screening revealed that one of the two putatively important HAS2 substitutions in the NMR predicted to have a significant effect on hyaluronan synthase function was uniquely shared by all African mole-rats. Interestingly, we also identified multiple other amino acid substitutions in key domains of the HAS2 molecule, although the biological consequences of these for hyaluronan synthesis remain to be determined. Despite these results, we found evidence of strong purifying selection acting on the HAS2 gene across all mammals, and the NMR remains unique in its particular HAS2 sequence. Our results indicate that more work is needed to determine whether the apparent cancer resistance seen in NMR is shared by other members of the African mole-rat clade. PMID:25948568

  11. Molecular evolution of the hyaluronan synthase 2 gene in mammals: implications for adaptations to the subterranean niche and cancer resistance.

    PubMed

    Faulkes, Christopher G; Davies, Kalina T J; Rossiter, Stephen J; Bennett, Nigel C

    2015-05-01

    The naked mole-rat (NMR) Heterocephalus glaber is a unique and fascinating mammal exhibiting many unusual adaptations to a subterranean lifestyle. The recent discovery of their resistance to cancer and exceptional longevity has opened up new and important avenues of research. Part of this resistance to cancer has been attributed to the fact that NMRs produce a modified form of hyaluronan--a key constituent of the extracellular matrix--that is thought to confer increased elasticity of the skin as an adaptation for living in narrow tunnels. This so-called high molecular mass hyaluronan (HMM-HA) stems from two apparently unique substitutions in the hyaluronan synthase 2 enzyme (HAS2). To test whether other subterranean mammals with similar selection pressures also show molecular adaptation in their HAS2 gene, we sequenced the HAS2 gene for 11 subterranean mammals and closely related species, and combined these with data from 57 other mammals. Comparative screening revealed that one of the two putatively important HAS2 substitutions in the NMR predicted to have a significant effect on hyaluronan synthase function was uniquely shared by all African mole-rats. Interestingly, we also identified multiple other amino acid substitutions in key domains of the HAS2 molecule, although the biological consequences of these for hyaluronan synthesis remain to be determined. Despite these results, we found evidence of strong purifying selection acting on the HAS2 gene across all mammals, and the NMR remains unique in its particular HAS2 sequence. Our results indicate that more work is needed to determine whether the apparent cancer resistance seen in NMR is shared by other members of the African mole-rat clade.

  12. Physicochemical evolution and molecular adaptation of the cetacean osmoregulation-related gene UT-A2 and implications for functional studies.

    PubMed

    Wang, Jingzhen; Yu, Xueying; Hu, Bo; Zheng, Jinsong; Xiao, Wuhan; Hao, Yujiang; Liu, Wenhua; Wang, Ding

    2015-01-01

    Cetaceans have an enigmatic evolutionary history of re-invading aquatic habitats. One of their essential adaptabilities that has enabled this process is their homeostatic strategy adjustment. Here, we investigated the physicochemical evolution and molecular adaptation of the cetacean urea transporter UT-A2, which plays an important role in urine concentration and water homeostasis. First, we cloned UT-A2 from the freshwater Yangtze finless porpoise, after which bioinformatics analyses were conducted based on available datasets (including freshwater baiji and marine toothed and baleen whales) using MEGA, PAML, DataMonkey, TreeSAAP and Consurf. Our findings suggest that the UT-A2 protein shows folding similar to that of dvUT and UT-B, whereas some variations occurred in the functional So and Si regions of the selectivity filter. Additionally, several regions of the cetacean UT-A2 protein have experienced molecular adaptations. We suggest that positive-destabilizing selection could contribute to adaptations by influencing its biochemical and conformational character. The conservation of amino acid residues within the selectivity filter of the urea conduction pore is likely to be necessary for urea conduction, whereas the non-conserved amino acid replacements around the entrance and exit of the conduction pore could potentially affect the activity, which could be interesting target sites for future mutagenesis studies.

  13. Physicochemical Evolution and Molecular Adaptation of the Cetacean Osmoregulation-related Gene UT-A2 and Implications for Functional Studies

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jingzhen; Yu, Xueying; Hu, Bo; Zheng, Jinsong; Xiao, Wuhan; Hao, Yujiang; Liu, Wenhua; Wang, Ding

    2015-01-01

    Cetaceans have an enigmatic evolutionary history of re-invading aquatic habitats. One of their essential adaptabilities that has enabled this process is their homeostatic strategy adjustment. Here, we investigated the physicochemical evolution and molecular adaptation of the cetacean urea transporter UT-A2, which plays an important role in urine concentration and water homeostasis. First, we cloned UT-A2 from the freshwater Yangtze finless porpoise, after which bioinformatics analyses were conducted based on available datasets (including freshwater baiji and marine toothed and baleen whales) using MEGA, PAML, DataMonkey, TreeSAAP and Consurf. Our findings suggest that the UT-A2 protein shows folding similar to that of dvUT and UT-B, whereas some variations occurred in the functional So and Si regions of the selectivity filter. Additionally, several regions of the cetacean UT-A2 protein have experienced molecular adaptations. We suggest that positive-destabilizing selection could contribute to adaptations by influencing its biochemical and conformational character. The conservation of amino acid residues within the selectivity filter of the urea conduction pore is likely to be necessary for urea conduction, whereas the non-conserved amino acid replacements around the entrance and exit of the conduction pore could potentially affect the activity, which could be interesting target sites for future mutagenesis studies. PMID:25762239

  14. Adaptive evolution of animal toxin multigene families.

    PubMed

    Kordis, D; Gubensek, F

    2000-12-30

    Animal toxins comprise a diverse array of proteins that have a variety of biochemical and pharmacological functions. A large number of animal toxins are encoded by multigene families. From studies of several toxin multigene families at the gene level the picture is emerging that most have been functionally diversified by gene duplication and adaptive evolution. The number of pharmacological activities in most toxin multigene families results from their adaptive evolution. The molecular evolution of animal toxins has been analysed in some multigene families, at both the intraspecies and interspecies levels. In most toxin multigene families, the rate of non-synonymous to synonymous substitutions (dN/dS) is higher than one. Thus natural selection has acted to diversify coding sequences and consequently the toxin functions. The selection pressure for the rapid adaptive evolution of animal toxins is the need for quick immobilization of the prey in classical predator and prey interactions. Currently available evidence for adaptive evolution in animal toxin multigene families will be considered in this review.

  15. "Preconceived Adaptation and Inverted Evolution"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jungwirth, E.

    1975-01-01

    Alerts teachers, science-test writers and other relevant persons to the problem of distorted concepts which might arise from careless and/or irresponsible usage of the language of science. Provides examples of semantic problems in writings related to the concepts of adaptation and evolution. (GS)

  16. The Molecular Basis of Evolution.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilson, Allan C.

    1985-01-01

    Discovery that mutations accumulate at steady rates over time in the genes of all lineages of plants and animals has led to new insights into evolution at the molecular and organismal levels. Discusses molecular evolution, examining deoxyribonuclei acid (DNA) sequences, morphological distances, and codon rate of change. (DH)

  17. Molecular signatures of lineage-specific adaptive evolution in a unique sea basin: the example of an anadromous goby Leucopsarion petersii.

    PubMed

    Kokita, Tomoyuki; Takahashi, Sayaka; Kumada, Hiroki

    2013-03-01

    Climate changes on various time scales often shape genetic novelty and adaptive variation in many biotas. We explored molecular signatures of directional selection in populations of the ice goby Leucopsarion petersii inhabiting a unique sea basin, the Sea of Japan, where a wide variety of environments existed in the Pleistocene in relation to shifts in sea level by repeated glaciations. This species consisted of two historically allopatric lineages, the Japan Sea (JS) and Pacific Ocean (PO) lineages, and these have lived under contrasting marine environments that are expected to have imposed different selection regimes caused by past climatic and current oceanographic factors. We applied a limited genome-scan approach using seven candidate genes for phenotypic differences between two lineages in combination with 100 anonymous microsatellite loci. Neuropeptide Y (NPY) gene, which is an important regulator of food intake and potent orexigenic agent, and three anonymous microsatellites were identified as robust outliers, that is, candidate loci potentially under directional selection, by multiple divergence- and diversity-based outlier tests in comparisons focused on multiple populations of the JS vs. PO lineages. For these outlier loci, populations of the JS lineage had putative signals of selective sweeps. Additionally, real-time quantitative PCR analysis using fish reared in a common environment showed a higher expression level for NPY gene in the JS lineage. Thus, this study succeeded in identifying candidate genomic regions under selection across populations of the JS lineage and provided evidence for lineage-specific adaptive evolution in this unique sea basin.

  18. Directed Evolution and In Silico Analysis of Reaction Centre Proteins Reveal Molecular Signatures of Photosynthesis Adaptation to Radiation Pressure

    PubMed Central

    Rea, Giuseppina; Lambreva, Maya; Polticelli, Fabio; Bertalan, Ivo; Antonacci, Amina; Pastorelli, Sandro; Damasso, Mario; Johanningmeier, Udo; Giardi, Maria Teresa

    2011-01-01

    Evolutionary mechanisms adopted by the photosynthetic apparatus to modifications in the Earth's atmosphere on a geological time-scale remain a focus of intense research. The photosynthetic machinery has had to cope with continuously changing environmental conditions and particularly with the complex ionizing radiation emitted by solar flares. The photosynthetic D1 protein, being the site of electron tunneling-mediated charge separation and solar energy transduction, is a hot spot for the generation of radiation-induced radical injuries. We explored the possibility to produce D1 variants tolerant to ionizing radiation in Chlamydomonas reinhardtii and clarified the effect of radiation-induced oxidative damage on the photosynthetic proteins evolution. In vitro directed evolution strategies targeted at the D1 protein were adopted to create libraries of chlamydomonas random mutants, subsequently selected by exposures to radical-generating proton or neutron sources. The common trend observed in the D1 aminoacidic substitutions was the replacement of less polar by more polar amino acids. The applied selection pressure forced replacement of residues more sensitive to oxidative damage with less sensitive ones, suggesting that ionizing radiation may have been one of the driving forces in the evolution of the eukaryotic photosynthetic apparatus. A set of the identified aminoacidic substitutions, close to the secondary plastoquinone binding niche and oxygen evolving complex, were introduced by site-directed mutagenesis in un-transformed strains, and their sensitivity to free radicals attack analyzed. Mutants displayed reduced electron transport efficiency in physiological conditions, and increased photosynthetic performance stability and oxygen evolution capacity in stressful high-light conditions. Finally, comparative in silico analyses of D1 aminoacidic sequences of organisms differently located in the evolution chain, revealed a higher ratio of residues more sensitive to

  19. Molecular evolution of color vision in vertebrates.

    PubMed

    Yokoyama, Shozo

    2002-10-30

    Visual systems of vertebrates exhibit a striking level of diversity, reflecting their adaptive responses to various color environments. The photosensitive molecules, visual pigments, can be synthesized in vitro and their absorption spectra can be determined. Comparing the amino acid sequences and absorption spectra of various visual pigments, we can identify amino acid changes that have modified the absorption spectra of visual pigments. These hypotheses can then be tested using the in vitro assay. This approach has been a powerful tool in elucidating not only the molecular bases of color vision, but the processes of adaptive evolution at the molecular level.

  20. Molecular evolution and host adaptation of Bordetella spp.: phylogenetic analysis using multilocus enzyme electrophoresis and typing with three insertion sequences.

    PubMed Central

    van der Zee, A; Mooi, F; Van Embden, J; Musser, J

    1997-01-01

    A total of 188 Bordetella strains were characterized by the electrophoretic mobilities of 15 metabolic enzymes and the distribution and variation in positions and copy numbers of three insertion sequences (IS). The presence or absence of IS elements within certain lineages was congruent with estimates of overall genetic relationships as revealed by multilocus enzyme electrophoresis. Bordetella pertussis and ovine B. parapertussis each formed separate clusters, while human B. parapertussis was most closely related to IS1001-containing B. bronchiseptica isolates. The results of the analysis provide support for the hypothesis that the population structure of Bordetella is predominantly clonal, with relatively little effective horizontal gene flow. Only a few examples of putative recombinational exchange of an IS element were detected. Based on the results of this study, we tried to reconstruct the evolutionary history of different host-adapted lineages. PMID:9352907

  1. Molecular evolution tracks macroevolutionary transitions in Cetacea.

    PubMed

    McGowen, Michael R; Gatesy, John; Wildman, Derek E

    2014-06-01

    Cetacea (whales, dolphins, and porpoises) is a model group for investigating the molecular signature of macroevolutionary transitions. Recent research has begun to reveal the molecular underpinnings of the remarkable anatomical and behavioral transformation in this clade. This shift from terrestrial to aquatic environments is arguably the best-understood major morphological transition in vertebrate evolution. The ancestral body plan and physiology were extensively modified and, in many cases, these crucial changes are recorded in cetacean genomes. Recent studies have highlighted cetaceans as central to understanding adaptive molecular convergence and pseudogene formation. Here, we review current research in cetacean molecular evolution and the potential of Cetacea as a model for the study of other macroevolutionary transitions from a genomic perspective. PMID:24794916

  2. Molecular evolution tracks macroevolutionary transitions in Cetacea.

    PubMed

    McGowen, Michael R; Gatesy, John; Wildman, Derek E

    2014-06-01

    Cetacea (whales, dolphins, and porpoises) is a model group for investigating the molecular signature of macroevolutionary transitions. Recent research has begun to reveal the molecular underpinnings of the remarkable anatomical and behavioral transformation in this clade. This shift from terrestrial to aquatic environments is arguably the best-understood major morphological transition in vertebrate evolution. The ancestral body plan and physiology were extensively modified and, in many cases, these crucial changes are recorded in cetacean genomes. Recent studies have highlighted cetaceans as central to understanding adaptive molecular convergence and pseudogene formation. Here, we review current research in cetacean molecular evolution and the potential of Cetacea as a model for the study of other macroevolutionary transitions from a genomic perspective.

  3. Chemical evolution of molecular clouds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Prasad, Sheo S.; Tarafdar, Sankar P.; Villere, Karen R.; Huntress, Wesley T., Jr.

    1987-01-01

    The principles behind the coupled chemical-dynamical evolution of molecular clouds are described. Particular attention is given to current problems involving the simplest species (i.e., C. CO, O2, and H2) in quiescent clouds. The results of a comparison made between the molecular abundances in the Orion ridge and the hot core (Blake, 1986) are presented.

  4. Epistatic adaptive evolution of human color vision.

    PubMed

    Yokoyama, Shozo; Xing, Jinyi; Liu, Yang; Faggionato, Davide; Altun, Ahmet; Starmer, William T

    2014-12-01

    Establishing genotype-phenotype relationship is the key to understand the molecular mechanism of phenotypic adaptation. This initial step may be untangled by analyzing appropriate ancestral molecules, but it is a daunting task to recapitulate the evolution of non-additive (epistatic) interactions of amino acids and function of a protein separately. To adapt to the ultraviolet (UV)-free retinal environment, the short wavelength-sensitive (SWS1) visual pigment in human (human S1) switched from detecting UV to absorbing blue light during the last 90 million years. Mutagenesis experiments of the UV-sensitive pigment in the Boreoeutherian ancestor show that the blue-sensitivity was achieved by seven mutations. The experimental and quantum chemical analyses show that 4,008 of all 5,040 possible evolutionary trajectories are terminated prematurely by containing a dehydrated nonfunctional pigment. Phylogenetic analysis further suggests that human ancestors achieved the blue-sensitivity gradually and almost exclusively by epistasis. When the final stage of spectral tuning of human S1 was underway 45-30 million years ago, the middle and long wavelength-sensitive (MWS/LWS) pigments appeared and so-called trichromatic color vision was established by interprotein epistasis. The adaptive evolution of human S1 differs dramatically from orthologous pigments with a major mutational effect used in achieving blue-sensitivity in a fish and several mammalian species and in regaining UV vision in birds. These observations imply that the mechanisms of epistatic interactions must be understood by studying various orthologues in different species that have adapted to various ecological and physiological environments. PMID:25522367

  5. Epistatic Adaptive Evolution of Human Color Vision

    PubMed Central

    Yokoyama, Shozo; Xing, Jinyi; Liu, Yang; Faggionato, Davide; Altun, Ahmet; Starmer, William T.

    2014-01-01

    Establishing genotype-phenotype relationship is the key to understand the molecular mechanism of phenotypic adaptation. This initial step may be untangled by analyzing appropriate ancestral molecules, but it is a daunting task to recapitulate the evolution of non-additive (epistatic) interactions of amino acids and function of a protein separately. To adapt to the ultraviolet (UV)-free retinal environment, the short wavelength-sensitive (SWS1) visual pigment in human (human S1) switched from detecting UV to absorbing blue light during the last 90 million years. Mutagenesis experiments of the UV-sensitive pigment in the Boreoeutherian ancestor show that the blue-sensitivity was achieved by seven mutations. The experimental and quantum chemical analyses show that 4,008 of all 5,040 possible evolutionary trajectories are terminated prematurely by containing a dehydrated nonfunctional pigment. Phylogenetic analysis further suggests that human ancestors achieved the blue-sensitivity gradually and almost exclusively by epistasis. When the final stage of spectral tuning of human S1 was underway 45–30 million years ago, the middle and long wavelength-sensitive (MWS/LWS) pigments appeared and so-called trichromatic color vision was established by interprotein epistasis. The adaptive evolution of human S1 differs dramatically from orthologous pigments with a major mutational effect used in achieving blue-sensitivity in a fish and several mammalian species and in regaining UV vision in birds. These observations imply that the mechanisms of epistatic interactions must be understood by studying various orthologues in different species that have adapted to various ecological and physiological environments. PMID:25522367

  6. Epistatic adaptive evolution of human color vision.

    PubMed

    Yokoyama, Shozo; Xing, Jinyi; Liu, Yang; Faggionato, Davide; Altun, Ahmet; Starmer, William T

    2014-12-01

    Establishing genotype-phenotype relationship is the key to understand the molecular mechanism of phenotypic adaptation. This initial step may be untangled by analyzing appropriate ancestral molecules, but it is a daunting task to recapitulate the evolution of non-additive (epistatic) interactions of amino acids and function of a protein separately. To adapt to the ultraviolet (UV)-free retinal environment, the short wavelength-sensitive (SWS1) visual pigment in human (human S1) switched from detecting UV to absorbing blue light during the last 90 million years. Mutagenesis experiments of the UV-sensitive pigment in the Boreoeutherian ancestor show that the blue-sensitivity was achieved by seven mutations. The experimental and quantum chemical analyses show that 4,008 of all 5,040 possible evolutionary trajectories are terminated prematurely by containing a dehydrated nonfunctional pigment. Phylogenetic analysis further suggests that human ancestors achieved the blue-sensitivity gradually and almost exclusively by epistasis. When the final stage of spectral tuning of human S1 was underway 45-30 million years ago, the middle and long wavelength-sensitive (MWS/LWS) pigments appeared and so-called trichromatic color vision was established by interprotein epistasis. The adaptive evolution of human S1 differs dramatically from orthologous pigments with a major mutational effect used in achieving blue-sensitivity in a fish and several mammalian species and in regaining UV vision in birds. These observations imply that the mechanisms of epistatic interactions must be understood by studying various orthologues in different species that have adapted to various ecological and physiological environments.

  7. The functional basis of adaptive evolution in chemostats

    PubMed Central

    Gresham, David; Hong, Jungeui

    2014-01-01

    Two of the central problems in biology are determining the molecular basis of adaptive evolution and understanding how cells regulate their growth. The chemostat is a device for culturing cells that provides great utility in tackling both of these problems: it enables precise control of the selective pressure under which organisms evolve and it facilitates experimental control of cell growth rate. The aim of this review is to synthesize results from studies of the functional basis of adaptive evolution in long-term chemostat selections using Escherichia coli and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. We describe the principle of the chemostat, provide a summary of studies of experimental evolution in chemostats, and use these studies to assess our current understanding of selection in the chemostat. Functional studies of adaptive evolution in chemostats provide a unique means of interrogating the genetic networks that control cell growth, which complements functional genomic approaches and quantitative trait loci (QTL) mapping in natural populations. An integrated approach to the study of adaptive evolution that accounts for both molecular function and evolutionary processes is critical to advancing our understanding of evolution. By renewing efforts to integrate these two research programs, experimental evolution in chemostats is ideally suited to extending the functional synthesis to the study of genetic networks. PMID:25098268

  8. Evolution of adaptation mechanisms: Adaptation energy, stress, and oscillating death.

    PubMed

    Gorban, Alexander N; Tyukina, Tatiana A; Smirnova, Elena V; Pokidysheva, Lyudmila I

    2016-09-21

    In 1938, Selye proposed the notion of adaptation energy and published 'Experimental evidence supporting the conception of adaptation energy.' Adaptation of an animal to different factors appears as the spending of one resource. Adaptation energy is a hypothetical extensive quantity spent for adaptation. This term causes much debate when one takes it literally, as a physical quantity, i.e. a sort of energy. The controversial points of view impede the systematic use of the notion of adaptation energy despite experimental evidence. Nevertheless, the response to many harmful factors often has general non-specific form and we suggest that the mechanisms of physiological adaptation admit a very general and nonspecific description. We aim to demonstrate that Selye׳s adaptation energy is the cornerstone of the top-down approach to modelling of non-specific adaptation processes. We analyze Selye׳s axioms of adaptation energy together with Goldstone׳s modifications and propose a series of models for interpretation of these axioms. Adaptation energy is considered as an internal coordinate on the 'dominant path' in the model of adaptation. The phenomena of 'oscillating death' and 'oscillating remission' are predicted on the base of the dynamical models of adaptation. Natural selection plays a key role in the evolution of mechanisms of physiological adaptation. We use the fitness optimization approach to study of the distribution of resources for neutralization of harmful factors, during adaptation to a multifactor environment, and analyze the optimal strategies for different systems of factors.

  9. Selectionism and Neutralism in Molecular Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Nei, Masatoshi

    2006-01-01

    Charles Darwin proposed that evolution occurs primarily by natural selection, but this view has been controversial from the beginning. Two of the major opposing views have been mutationism and neutralism. Early molecular studies suggested that most amino acid substitutions in proteins are neutral or nearly neutral and the functional change of proteins occurs by a few key amino acid substitutions. This suggestion generated an intense controversy over selectionism and neutralism. This controversy is partially caused by Kimura's definition of neutrality, which was too strict (|2Ns| ≤ 1). If we define neutral mutations as the mutations that do not change the function of gene products appreciably, many controversies disappear because slightly deleterious and slightly advantageous mutations are engulfed by neutral mutations. The ratio of the rate of nonsynonymous nucleotide substitution to that of synonymous substitution is a useful quantity to study positive Darwinian selection operating at highly variable genetic loci, but it does not necessarily detect adaptively important codons. Previously, multigene families were thought to evolve following the model of concerted evolution, but new evidence indicates that most of them evolve by a birth-and-death process of duplicate genes. It is now clear that most phenotypic characters or genetic systems such as the adaptive immune system in vertebrates are controlled by the interaction of a number of multigene families, which are often evolutionarily related and are subject to birth-and-death evolution. Therefore, it is important to study the mechanisms of gene family interaction for understanding phenotypic evolution. Because gene duplication occurs more or less at random, phenotypic evolution contains some fortuitous elements, though the environmental factors also play an important role. The randomness of phenotypic evolution is qualitatively different from allele frequency changes by random genetic drift. However, there is

  10. Selectionism and neutralism in molecular evolution.

    PubMed

    Nei, Masatoshi

    2005-12-01

    Charles Darwin proposed that evolution occurs primarily by natural selection, but this view has been controversial from the beginning. Two of the major opposing views have been mutationism and neutralism. Early molecular studies suggested that most amino acid substitutions in proteins are neutral or nearly neutral and the functional change of proteins occurs by a few key amino acid substitutions. This suggestion generated an intense controversy over selectionism and neutralism. This controversy is partially caused by Kimura's definition of neutrality, which was too strict (|2Ns|< or =1). If we define neutral mutations as the mutations that do not change the function of gene products appreciably, many controversies disappear because slightly deleterious and slightly advantageous mutations are engulfed by neutral mutations. The ratio of the rate of nonsynonymous nucleotide substitution to that of synonymous substitution is a useful quantity to study positive Darwinian selection operating at highly variable genetic loci, but it does not necessarily detect adaptively important codons. Previously, multigene families were thought to evolve following the model of concerted evolution, but new evidence indicates that most of them evolve by a birth-and-death process of duplicate genes. It is now clear that most phenotypic characters or genetic systems such as the adaptive immune system in vertebrates are controlled by the interaction of a number of multigene families, which are often evolutionarily related and are subject to birth-and-death evolution. Therefore, it is important to study the mechanisms of gene family interaction for understanding phenotypic evolution. Because gene duplication occurs more or less at random, phenotypic evolution contains some fortuitous elements, though the environmental factors also play an important role. The randomness of phenotypic evolution is qualitatively different from allele frequency changes by random genetic drift. However, there is

  11. Adaptation, plant evolution, and the fossil record

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Knoll, A. H.; Niklas, K. J.

    1987-01-01

    The importance of adaptation in determining patterns of evolution has become an important focus of debate in evolutionary biology. As it pertains to paleobotany, the issue is whether or not adaptive evolution mediated by natural selection is sufficient to explain the stratigraphic distributions of taxa and character states observed in the plant fossil record. One means of addressing this question is the functional evaluation of stratigraphic series of plant organs set in the context of paleoenvironmental change and temporal patterns of floral composition within environments. For certain organ systems, quantitative estimates of biophysical performance can be made on the basis of structures preserved in the fossil record. Performance estimates for plants separated in time or space can be compared directly. Implicit in different hypotheses of the forces that shape the evolutionary record (e.g. adaptation, mass extinction, rapid environmental change, chance) are predictions about stratigraphic and paleoenvironmental trends in the efficacy of functional performance. Existing data suggest that following the evolution of a significant structural innovation, adaptation for improved functional performance can be a major determinant of evolutionary changes in plants; however, there are structural and development limits to functional improvement, and once these are reached, the structure in question may no longer figure strongly in selection until and unless a new innovation evolves. The Silurian-Devonian paleobotanical record is consistent with the hypothesis that the succession of lowland floodplain dominants preserved in the fossil record of this interval was determined principally by the repeated evolution of new taxa that rose to ecological importance because of competitive advantages conferred by improved biophysical performance. This does not seem to be equally true for Carboniferous-Jurassic dominants of swamp and lowland floodplain environments. In these cases

  12. Molecular epidemiology, phylogeny and evolution of Legionella.

    PubMed

    Khodr, A; Kay, E; Gomez-Valero, L; Ginevra, C; Doublet, P; Buchrieser, C; Jarraud, S

    2016-09-01

    Legionella are opportunistic pathogens that develop in aquatic environments where they multiply in protozoa. When infected aerosols reach the human respiratory tract they may accidentally infect the alveolar macrophages leading to a severe pneumonia called Legionnaires' disease (LD). The ability of Legionella to survive within host-cells is strictly dependent on the Dot/Icm Type 4 Secretion System that translocates a large repertoire of effectors into the host cell cytosol. Although Legionella is a large genus comprising nearly 60 species that are worldwide distributed, only about half of them have been involved in LD cases. Strikingly, the species Legionella pneumophila alone is responsible for 90% of all LD cases. The present review summarizes the molecular approaches that are used for L. pneumophila genotyping with a major focus on the contribution of whole genome sequencing (WGS) to the investigation of local L. pneumophila outbreaks and global epidemiology studies. We report the newest knowledge regarding the phylogeny and the evolution of Legionella and then focus on virulence evolution of those Legionella species that are known to have the capacity to infect humans. Finally, we discuss the evolutionary forces and adaptation mechanisms acting on the Dot/Icm system itself as well as the role of mobile genetic elements (MGE) encoding T4ASSs and of gene duplications in the evolution of Legionella and its adaptation to different hosts and lifestyles. PMID:27180896

  13. Molecular evolution of prolactin in primates.

    PubMed

    Wallis, O Caryl; Mac-Kwashie, Akofa O; Makri, Georgia; Wallis, Michael

    2005-05-01

    Pituitary prolactin, like growth hormone (GH) and several other protein hormones, shows an episodic pattern of molecular evolution in which sustained bursts of rapid change contrast with long periods of slow evolution. A period of rapid change occurred in the evolution of prolactin in primates, leading to marked sequence differences between human prolactin and that of nonprimate mammals. We have defined this burst more precisely by sequencing the coding regions of prolactin genes for a prosimian, the slow loris (Nycticebus pygmaeus), and a New World monkey, the marmoset (Callithrix jacchus). Slow loris prolactin is very similar in sequence to pig prolactin, so the episode of rapid change occurred during primate evolution, after the separation of lines leading to prosimians and higher primates. Marmoset prolactin is similar in sequence to human prolactin, so the accelerated evolution occurred before divergence of New World monkeys and Old World monkeys/apes. The burst of change was confined largely to coding sequence (nonsynonymous sites) for mature prolactin and is not marked in other components of the gene sequence. This and the observations that (1) there was no apparent loss of function during the episode of rapid evolution, (2) the rate of evolution slowed toward the basal rate after this burst, and (3) the distribution of substitutions in the prolactin molecule is very uneven support the idea that this episode of rapid change was due to positive adaptive selection. In the slow loris and marmoset there is no evidence for duplication of the prolactin gene, and evidence from another New World monkey (Cebus albifrons) and from the chimpanzee and human genome sequences, suggests that this is the general position in primates, contrasting with the situation for GH genes. The chimpanzee prolactin sequence differs from that of human at two residues and comparison of human and chimpanzee prolactin gene sequences suggests that noncoding regions associated with regulating

  14. The complex evolutionary history of seeing red: molecular phylogeny and the evolution of an adaptive visual system in deep-sea dragonfishes (Stomiiformes: Stomiidae).

    PubMed

    Kenaley, Christopher P; Devaney, Shannon C; Fjeran, Taylor T

    2014-04-01

    The vast majority of deep-sea fishes have retinas composed of only rod cells sensitive to only shortwave blue light, approximately 480-490 nm. A group of deep-sea dragonfishes, the loosejaws (family Stomiidae), possesses far-red emitting photophores and rhodopsins sensitive to long-wave emissions greater than 650 nm. In this study, the rhodopsin diversity within the Stomiidae is surveyed based on an analysis of rod opsin-coding sequences from representatives of 23 of the 28 genera. Using phylogenetic inference, fossil-calibrated estimates of divergence times, and a comparative approach scanning the stomiid phylogeny for shared genotypes and substitution histories, we explore the evolution and timing of spectral tuning in the family. Our results challenge both the monophyly of the family Stomiidae and the loosejaws. Despite paraphyly of the loosejaws, we infer for the first time that far-red visual systems have a single evolutionary origin within the family and that this shift in phenotype occurred at approximately 15.4 Ma. In addition, we found strong evidence that at approximately 11.2 Ma the most recent common ancestor of two dragonfish genera reverted to a primitive shortwave visual system during its evolution from a far-red sensitive dragonfish. According to branch-site tests for adaptive evolution, we hypothesize that positive selection may be driving spectral tuning in the Stomiidae. These results indicate that the evolutionary history of visual systems in deep-sea species is complex and a more thorough understanding of this system requires an integrative comparative approach.

  15. Towards the identification of the loci of adaptive evolution

    PubMed Central

    Pardo-Diaz, Carolina; Salazar, Camilo; Jiggins, Chris D

    2015-01-01

    1. Establishing the genetic and molecular basis underlying adaptive traits is one of the major goals of evolutionary geneticists in order to understand the connection between genotype and phenotype and elucidate the mechanisms of evolutionary change. Despite considerable effort to address this question, there remain relatively few systems in which the genes shaping adaptations have been identified. 2. Here, we review the experimental tools that have been applied to document the molecular basis underlying evolution in several natural systems, in order to highlight their benefits, limitations and suitability. In most cases, a combination of DNA, RNA and functional methodologies with field experiments will be needed to uncover the genes and mechanisms shaping adaptation in nature. PMID:25937885

  16. Adaptive evolution: evaluating empirical support for theoretical predictions.

    PubMed

    Olson-Manning, Carrie F; Wagner, Maggie R; Mitchell-Olds, Thomas

    2012-12-01

    Adaptive evolution is shaped by the interaction of population genetics, natural selection and underlying network and biochemical constraints. Variation created by mutation, the raw material for evolutionary change, is translated into phenotypes by flux through metabolic pathways and by the topography and dynamics of molecular networks. Finally, the retention of genetic variation and the efficacy of selection depend on population genetics and demographic history. Emergent high-throughput experimental methods and sequencing technologies allow us to gather more evidence and to move beyond the theory in different systems and populations. Here we review the extent to which recent evidence supports long-established theoretical principles of adaptation.

  17. Adaptive Evolution of the STRA6 Genes in Mammalian

    PubMed Central

    Wu, Jianghong; Xiang, Hui; Qi, Yunxia; Yang, Ding; Wang, Xiaojuan; Sun, Hailian; Wang, Feng; Liu, Bin

    2014-01-01

    Stimulated by retinoic acid 6 (STRA6) is the receptor for retinol binding protein and is relevant for the transport of retinol to specific sites such as the eye. The adaptive evolution mechanism that vertebrates have occupied nearly every habitat available on earth and adopted various lifestyles associated with different light conditions and visual challenges, as well as their role in development and adaptation is thus far unknown. In this work, we have investigated different aspects of vertebrate STRA6 evolution and used molecular evolutionary analyses to detect evidence of vertebrate adaptation to the lightless habitat. Free-ratio model revealed significant rate shifts immediately after the species divergence. The amino acid sites detected to be under positive selection are within the extracellular loops of STRA6 protein. Branch-site model A test revealed that STRA6 has undergone positive selection in the different phyla of mammalian except for the branch of rodent. The results suggest that interactions between different light environments and host may be driving adaptive change in STRA6 by competition between species. In support of this, we found that altered functional constraints may take place at some amino acid residues after speciation. We suggest that STRA6 has undergone adaptive evolution in different branch of vertebrate relation to habitat environment. PMID:25251323

  18. Adaptive evolution of genes underlying schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Crespi, Bernard; Summers, Kyle; Dorus, Steve

    2007-11-22

    Schizophrenia poses an evolutionary-genetic paradox because it exhibits strongly negative fitness effects and high heritability, yet it persists at a prevalence of approximately 1% across all human cultures. Recent theory has proposed a resolution: that genetic liability to schizophrenia has evolved as a secondary consequence of selection for human cognitive traits. This hypothesis predicts that genes increasing the risk of this disorder have been subject to positive selection in the evolutionary history of humans and other primates. We evaluated this prediction using tests for recent selective sweeps in human populations and maximum-likelihood tests for selection during primate evolution. Significant evidence for positive selection was evident using one or both methods for 28 of 76 genes demonstrated to mediate liability to schizophrenia, including DISC1, DTNBP1 and NRG1, which exhibit especially strong and well-replicated functional and genetic links to this disorder. Strong evidence of non-neutral, accelerated evolution was found for DISC1, particularly for exon 2, the only coding region within the schizophrenia-associated haplotype. Additionally, genes associated with schizophrenia exhibited a statistically significant enrichment in their signals of positive selection in HapMap and PAML analyses of evolution along the human lineage, when compared with a control set of genes involved in neuronal activities. The selective forces underlying adaptive evolution of these genes remain largely unknown, but these findings provide convergent evidence consistent with the hypothesis that schizophrenia represents, in part, a maladaptive by-product of adaptive changes during human evolution.

  19. The adaptive evolution of the mammalian mitochondrial genome

    PubMed Central

    da Fonseca, Rute R; Johnson, Warren E; O'Brien, Stephen J; Ramos, Maria João; Antunes, Agostinho

    2008-01-01

    Background The mitochondria produce up to 95% of a eukaryotic cell's energy through oxidative phosphorylation. The proteins involved in this vital process are under high functional constraints. However, metabolic requirements vary across species, potentially modifying selective pressures. We evaluate the adaptive evolution of 12 protein-coding mitochondrial genes in 41 placental mammalian species by assessing amino acid sequence variation and exploring the functional implications of observed variation in secondary and tertiary protein structures. Results Wide variation in the properties of amino acids were observed at functionally important regions of cytochrome b in species with more-specialized metabolic requirements (such as adaptation to low energy diet or large body size, such as in elephant, dugong, sloth, and pangolin, and adaptation to unusual oxygen requirements, for example diving in cetaceans, flying in bats, and living at high altitudes in alpacas). Signatures of adaptive variation in the NADH dehydrogenase complex were restricted to the loop regions of the transmembrane units which likely function as protons pumps. Evidence of adaptive variation in the cytochrome c oxidase complex was observed mostly at the interface between the mitochondrial and nuclear-encoded subunits, perhaps evidence of co-evolution. The ATP8 subunit, which has an important role in the assembly of F0, exhibited the highest signal of adaptive variation. ATP6, which has an essential role in rotor performance, showed a high adaptive variation in predicted loop areas. Conclusion Our study provides insight into the adaptive evolution of the mtDNA genome in mammals and its implications for the molecular mechanism of oxidative phosphorylation. We present a framework for future experimental characterization of the impact of specific mutations in the function, physiology, and interactions of the mtDNA encoded proteins involved in oxidative phosphorylation. PMID:18318906

  20. Adapting Digital Libraries to Continual Evolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barkstrom, Bruce R.; Finch, Melinda; Ferebee, Michelle; Mackey, Calvin

    2002-01-01

    In this paper, we describe five investment streams (data storage infrastructure, knowledge management, data production control, data transport and security, and personnel skill mix) that need to be balanced against short-term operating demands in order to maximize the probability of long-term viability of a digital library. Because of the rapid pace of information technology change, a digital library cannot be a static institution. Rather, it has to become a flexible organization adapted to continuous evolution of its infrastructure.

  1. Bringing Molecules Back into Molecular Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Wilke, Claus O.

    2012-01-01

    Much molecular-evolution research is concerned with sequence analysis. Yet these sequences represent real, three-dimensional molecules with complex structure and function. Here I highlight a growing trend in the field to incorporate molecular structure and function into computational molecular-evolution work. I consider three focus areas: reconstruction and analysis of past evolutionary events, such as phylogenetic inference or methods to infer selection pressures; development of toy models and simulations to identify fundamental principles of molecular evolution; and atom-level, highly realistic computational modeling of molecular structure and function aimed at making predictions about possible future evolutionary events. PMID:22761562

  2. Evolution and ecology meet molecular genetics: adaptive phenotypic plasticity in two isolated Negev desert populations of Acacia raddiana at either end of a rainfall gradient

    PubMed Central

    Ward, David; Shrestha, Madan K.; Golan-Goldhirsh, Avi

    2012-01-01

    Background and Aims The ecological, evolutionary and genetic bases of population differentiation in a variable environment are often related to the selection pressures that plants experience. We compared differences in several growth- and defence-related traits in two isolated populations of Acacia raddiana trees from sites at either end of an extreme environmental gradient in the Negev desert. Methods We used random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD) to determine the molecular differences between populations. We grew plants under two levels of water, three levels of nutrients and three levels of herbivory to test for phenotypic plasticity and adaptive phenotypic plasticity. Key Results The RAPD analyses showed that these populations are highly genetically differentiated. Phenotypic plasticity in various morphological traits in A. raddiana was related to patterns of population genetic differentiation between the two study sites. Although we did not test for maternal effects in these long-lived trees, significant genotype × environment (G × E) interactions in some of these traits indicated that such plasticity may be adaptive. Conclusions The main selection pressure in this desert environment, perhaps unsurprisingly, is water. Increased water availability resulted in greater growth in the southern population, which normally receives far less rain than the northern population. Even under the conditions that we defined as low water and/or nutrients, the performance of the seedlings from the southern population was significantly better, perhaps reflecting selection for these traits. Consistent with previous studies of this genus, there was no evidence of trade-offs between physical and chemical defences and plant growth parameters in this study. Rather, there appeared to be positive correlations between plant size and defence parameters. The great variation in several traits in both populations may result in a diverse potential for responding to selection pressures in

  3. Evolution of speech-specific cognitive adaptations

    PubMed Central

    de Boer, Bart

    2015-01-01

    This paper argues that an evolutionary perspective is natural when investigating cognitive adaptations related to language. This is because there appears to be correspondence between traits that linguists consider interesting and traits that have undergone selective pressure related to language. The paper briefly reviews theoretical results that shed light on what kind of adaptations we can expect to have evolved and then reviews concrete work related to the evolution of adaptations for combinatorial speech. It turns out that there is as yet no strong direct evidence for cognitive traits that have undergone selection related to speech, but there is indirect evidence that indicates selection. However, the traits that may have undergone selection are expected to be continuously variable ones, rather than the discrete ones that linguists have focused on traditionally. PMID:26483746

  4. Evolution of speech-specific cognitive adaptations.

    PubMed

    de Boer, Bart

    2015-01-01

    This paper argues that an evolutionary perspective is natural when investigating cognitive adaptations related to language. This is because there appears to be correspondence between traits that linguists consider interesting and traits that have undergone selective pressure related to language. The paper briefly reviews theoretical results that shed light on what kind of adaptations we can expect to have evolved and then reviews concrete work related to the evolution of adaptations for combinatorial speech. It turns out that there is as yet no strong direct evidence for cognitive traits that have undergone selection related to speech, but there is indirect evidence that indicates selection. However, the traits that may have undergone selection are expected to be continuously variable ones, rather than the discrete ones that linguists have focused on traditionally.

  5. Adaptive processes drive ecomorphological convergent evolution in antwrens (Thamnophilidae).

    PubMed

    Bravo, Gustavo A; Remsen, J V; Brumfield, Robb T

    2014-10-01

    Phylogenetic niche conservatism (PNC) and convergence are contrasting evolutionary patterns that describe phenotypic similarity across independent lineages. Assessing whether and how adaptive processes give origin to these patterns represent a fundamental step toward understanding phenotypic evolution. Phylogenetic model-based approaches offer the opportunity not only to distinguish between PNC and convergence, but also to determine the extent that adaptive processes explain phenotypic similarity. The Myrmotherula complex in the Neotropical family Thamnophilidae is a polyphyletic group of sexually dimorphic small insectivorous forest birds that are relatively homogeneous in size and shape. Here, we integrate a comprehensive species-level molecular phylogeny of the Myrmotherula complex with morphometric and ecological data within a comparative framework to test whether phenotypic similarity is described by a pattern of PNC or convergence, and to identify evolutionary mechanisms underlying body size and shape evolution. We show that antwrens in the Myrmotherula complex represent distantly related clades that exhibit adaptive convergent evolution in body size and divergent evolution in body shape. Phenotypic similarity in the group is primarily driven by their tendency to converge toward smaller body sizes. Differences in body size and shape across lineages are associated to ecological and behavioral factors.

  6. Adaptive soft molecular self-assemblies.

    PubMed

    Wang, Andong; Shi, Wenyue; Huang, Jianbin; Yan, Yun

    2016-01-14

    Adaptive molecular self-assemblies provide possibility of constructing smart and functional materials in a non-covalent bottom-up manner. Exploiting the intrinsic properties of responsiveness of non-covalent interactions, a great number of fancy self-assemblies have been achieved. In this review, we try to highlight the recent advances in this field. The following contents are focused: (1) environmental adaptiveness, including smart self-assemblies adaptive to pH, temperature, pressure, and moisture; (2) special chemical adaptiveness, including nanostructures adaptive to important chemicals, such as enzymes, CO2, metal ions, redox agents, explosives, biomolecules; (3) field adaptiveness, including self-assembled materials that are capable of adapting to external fields such as magnetic field, electric field, light irradiation, and shear forces. PMID:26509717

  7. Independent Molecular Basis of Convergent Highland Adaptation in Maize.

    PubMed

    Takuno, Shohei; Ralph, Peter; Swarts, Kelly; Elshire, Rob J; Glaubitz, Jeffrey C; Buckler, Edward S; Hufford, Matthew B; Ross-Ibarra, Jeffrey

    2015-08-01

    Convergent evolution is the independent evolution of similar traits in different species or lineages of the same species; this often is a result of adaptation to similar environments, a process referred to as convergent adaptation. We investigate here the molecular basis of convergent adaptation in maize to highland climates in Mesoamerica and South America, using genome-wide SNP data. Taking advantage of archaeological data on the arrival of maize to the highlands, we infer demographic models for both populations, identifying evidence of a strong bottleneck and rapid expansion in South America. We use these models to then identify loci showing an excess of differentiation as a means of identifying putative targets of natural selection and compare our results to expectations from recently developed theory on convergent adaptation. Consistent with predictions across a wide parameter space, we see limited evidence for convergent evolution at the nucleotide level in spite of strong similarities in overall phenotypes. Instead, we show that selection appears to have predominantly acted on standing genetic variation and that introgression from wild teosinte populations appears to have played a role in highland adaptation in Mexican maize.

  8. Independent Molecular Basis of Convergent Highland Adaptation in Maize

    PubMed Central

    Takuno, Shohei; Ralph, Peter; Swarts, Kelly; Elshire, Rob J.; Glaubitz, Jeffrey C.; Buckler, Edward S.; Hufford, Matthew B.; Ross-Ibarra, Jeffrey

    2015-01-01

    Convergent evolution is the independent evolution of similar traits in different species or lineages of the same species; this often is a result of adaptation to similar environments, a process referred to as convergent adaptation. We investigate here the molecular basis of convergent adaptation in maize to highland climates in Mesoamerica and South America, using genome-wide SNP data. Taking advantage of archaeological data on the arrival of maize to the highlands, we infer demographic models for both populations, identifying evidence of a strong bottleneck and rapid expansion in South America. We use these models to then identify loci showing an excess of differentiation as a means of identifying putative targets of natural selection and compare our results to expectations from recently developed theory on convergent adaptation. Consistent with predictions across a wide parameter space, we see limited evidence for convergent evolution at the nucleotide level in spite of strong similarities in overall phenotypes. Instead, we show that selection appears to have predominantly acted on standing genetic variation and that introgression from wild teosinte populations appears to have played a role in highland adaptation in Mexican maize. PMID:26078279

  9. The Molecular Evolution of Actin

    PubMed Central

    Hightower, Robin C.; Meagher, Richard B.

    1986-01-01

    We have investigated the molecular evolution of plant and nonplant actin genes comparing nucleotide and amino acid sequences of 20 actin genes. Nucleotide changes resulting in amino acid substitutions (replacement substitutions) ranged from 3–7% for all pairwise comparisons of animal actin genes with the following exceptions. Comparisons between higher animal muscle actin gene sequences and comparisons between higher animal cytoplasmic actin gene sequences indicated <3% divergence. Comparisons between plant and nonplant actin genes revealed, with two exceptions, 11–15% replacement substitution. In the analysis of plant actins, replacement substitution between soybean actin genes SAc1, SAc3, SAc4 and maize actin gene MAc1 ranged from 8–10%, whereas these members within the soybean actin gene family ranged from 6–9% replacement substitution. The rate of sequence divergence of plant actin sequences appears to be similar to that observed for animal actins. Furthermore, these and other data suggest that the plant actin gene family is ancient and that the families of soybean and maize actin genes have diverged from a single common ancestral plant actin gene that originated long before the divergence of monocots and dicots. The soybean actin multigene family encodes at least three classes of actin. These classes each contain a pair of actin genes that have been designated kappa (SAc1, SAc6), lambda (SAc2, SAc4) and mu (SAc3, SAc7). The three classes of soybean actin are more divergent in nucleotide sequence from one another than higher animal cytoplasmic actin is divergent from muscle actin. The location and distribution of amino acid changes were compared between actin proteins from all sources. A comparison of the hydropathy of all actin sequences, except from Oxytricha, indicated a strong similarity in hydropathic character between all plant and nonplant actins despite the greater number of replacement substitutions in plant actins. These protein sequence

  10. Adaptive evolution of the osmoregulation-related genes in cetaceans during secondary aquatic adaptation

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Osmoregulation was a primary challenge for cetaceans during the evolutionary transition from a terrestrial to a mainly hyperosmotic environment. Several physiological mechanisms have been suggested to maintain the water and salt balance in cetaceans, but their genetic and evolutionary bases remain poorly explored. The current study investigated the genes involved in osmoregulation in cetaceans and compared them with their counterparts in terrestrial mammals to test whether adaptive evolution occurred during secondary aquatic adaptation. Results The present study analyzed the molecular evolution of 11 osmoregulation-related genes in 11 cetacean species, which represented all of the major cetacean clades. The results demonstrated positive selection acting on angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE), angiotensinogen (AGT), SLC14A2, and aquaporin 2 (AQP2). This evidence for the positive selection of AQP2 and SLC14A2 suggests that the adaptive evolution of these genes has helped to enhance the capacity for water and urea transport, thereby leading to the concentration of urine, which is an efficient mechanism for maintaining the water balance. By contrast, a series of positively selected amino acid residues identified in the ACE and AGT (two key members of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, RAAS) proteins of cetaceans suggests that RAAS might have been adapted to maintain the water and salt balance in response to a hyperosmotic environment. Radical amino acid changes in positively selected sites were distributed among most internal and terminal branches of the cetacean phylogeny, which suggests the pervasively adaptive evolution of osmoregulation since the origin of cetaceans and their subsequent diversification. Conclusions This is the first comprehensive analysis of the molecular evolution of osmoregulation-related genes in cetaceans in response to selection pressure from a generally hyperosmotic environment. Four genes, i.e., AQP2, SLC14A2, ACE, and AGT

  11. Evolution of cooperation on adaptively weighted networks.

    PubMed

    Cao, Lang; Ohtsuki, Hisashi; Wang, Bing; Aihara, Kazuyuki

    2011-03-01

    Recent studies have explored interactions between evolutionary game dynamics and population structure. Yet most studies so far mainly paid attention to unweighted and static networks. Here we explore evolutionary games played on dynamically weighted networks. Players update their strategies according to the payoffs they obtain. Players also update weights of their adjacent links depending on payoffs they gain through those links; profitable links are reinforced whereas unprofitable ones are weakened. The system is characterized by two time scales, the one for strategy update, β(S), and the other for weight adjustment, β(W). We find that, under a mean-field approximation, the asymptotic behavior of the system is described by the replicator equation with an effective payoff matrix, which is a combination of the original game matrix A and its transpose, A(T). Both analytical and numerical results show that such an adaptive weight adjustment mechanism dramatically promotes evolution of cooperation. PMID:21163270

  12. Adaptive evolution of four microcephaly genes and the evolution of brain size in anthropoid primates.

    PubMed

    Montgomery, Stephen H; Capellini, Isabella; Venditti, Chris; Barton, Robert A; Mundy, Nicholas I

    2011-01-01

    The anatomical basis and adaptive function of the expansion in primate brain size have long been studied; however, we are only beginning to understand the genetic basis of these evolutionary changes. Genes linked to human primary microcephaly have received much attention as they have accelerated evolutionary rates along lineages leading to humans. However, these studies focus narrowly on apes, and the link between microcephaly gene evolution and brain evolution is disputed. We analyzed the molecular evolution of four genes associated with microcephaly (ASPM, CDK5RAP2, CENPJ, MCPH1) across 21 species representing all major clades of anthropoid primates. Contrary to prevailing assumptions, positive selection was not limited to or intensified along the lineage leading to humans. In fact we show that all four loci were subject to positive selection across the anthropoid primate phylogeny. We developed clearly defined hypotheses to explicitly test if selection on these loci was associated with the evolution of brain size. We found positive relationships between both CDK5RAP2 and ASPM and neonatal brain mass and somewhat weaker relationships between these genes and adult brain size. In contrast, there is no evidence linking CENPJ and MCPH1 to brain size evolution. The stronger association of ASPM and CDK5RAP2 evolution with neonatal brain size than with adult brain size is consistent with these loci having a direct effect on prenatal neuronal proliferation. These results suggest that primate brain size may have at least a partially conserved genetic basis. Our results contradict a previous study that linked adaptive evolution of ASPM to changes in relative cortex size; however, our analysis indicates that this conclusion is not robust. Our finding that the coding regions of two widely expressed loci has experienced pervasive positive selection in relation to a complex, quantitative developmental phenotype provides a notable counterexample to the commonly asserted

  13. Bat echolocation calls: adaptation and convergent evolution

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Gareth; Holderied, Marc W

    2007-01-01

    Bat echolocation calls provide remarkable examples of ‘good design’ through evolution by natural selection. Theory developed from acoustics and sonar engineering permits a strong predictive basis for understanding echolocation performance. Call features, such as frequency, bandwidth, duration and pulse interval are all related to ecological niche. Recent technological breakthroughs have aided our understanding of adaptive aspects of call design in free-living bats. Stereo videogrammetry, laser scanning of habitat features and acoustic flight path tracking permit reconstruction of the flight paths of echolocating bats relative to obstacles and prey in nature. These methods show that echolocation calls are among the most intense airborne vocalizations produced by animals. Acoustic tracking has clarified how and why bats vary call structure in relation to flight speed. Bats using broadband echolocation calls adjust call design in a range-dependent manner so that nearby obstacles are localized accurately. Recent phylogenetic analyses based on gene sequences show that particular types of echolocation signals have evolved independently in several lineages of bats. Call design is often influenced more by perceptual challenges imposed by the environment than by phylogeny, and provides excellent examples of convergent evolution. Now that whole genome sequences of bats are imminent, understanding the functional genomics of echolocation will become a major challenge. PMID:17251105

  14. Bat echolocation calls: adaptation and convergent evolution.

    PubMed

    Jones, Gareth; Holderied, Marc W

    2007-04-01

    Bat echolocation calls provide remarkable examples of 'good design' through evolution by natural selection. Theory developed from acoustics and sonar engineering permits a strong predictive basis for understanding echolocation performance. Call features, such as frequency, bandwidth, duration and pulse interval are all related to ecological niche. Recent technological breakthroughs have aided our understanding of adaptive aspects of call design in free-living bats. Stereo videogrammetry, laser scanning of habitat features and acoustic flight path tracking permit reconstruction of the flight paths of echolocating bats relative to obstacles and prey in nature. These methods show that echolocation calls are among the most intense airborne vocalizations produced by animals. Acoustic tracking has clarified how and why bats vary call structure in relation to flight speed. Bats using broadband echolocation calls adjust call design in a range-dependent manner so that nearby obstacles are localized accurately. Recent phylogenetic analyses based on gene sequences show that particular types of echolocation signals have evolved independently in several lineages of bats. Call design is often influenced more by perceptual challenges imposed by the environment than by phylogeny, and provides excellent examples of convergent evolution. Now that whole genome sequences of bats are imminent, understanding the functional genomics of echolocation will become a major challenge.

  15. A biophysical perspective on molecular evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wilke, Claus

    2014-03-01

    The field of molecular evolution investigates how genes and genomes evolve over time. It has its origin in the late 1960s, when the first DNA and protein sequences were becoming available. With rapid progress in sequencing technologies came ever increasing demand for computational tools to study molecular evolution. Today, molecular evolution is among the largest subfields of evolutionary biology, and arguably one of the most computationally advanced. A side effect of the strong emphasis on developing sophisticated methods for sequence analysis has been that the underlying biophysical objects represented by the sequences, DNA molecules, RNA molecules, and proteins, have taken a back-seat in much computational molecular-evolution work. The vast majority of algorithms for sequence analysis, for example, operate purely on strings of letters, and don't incorporate any information of the biophysical reality that these letters represent. However, DNA, RNA, and proteins are three-dimensional physical objects composed of many interacting particles. We thus expect that their genetic evolution over time is shaped to some extent by these physical properties. Here, I will discuss the extent to which biophysical properties of proteins shape genetic evolution, and how we can use these properties to improve evolutionary analyses.

  16. Molecular adaptations in Antarctic fish and bacteria

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Russo, Roberta; Riccio, Alessia; di Prisco, Guido; Verde, Cinzia; Giordano, Daniela

    2010-08-01

    Marine organisms, living in the cold waters of the Southern Ocean, are exposed to high oxygen concentrations. Cold-adapted organisms have developed networks of defence mechanisms to protect themselves against oxidative stress. The dominant suborder Notothenioidei of the Southern Ocean is one of the most interesting models, within vertebrates, to study the evolutionary biological responses to extreme environment. Within bacteria, the psychrophilic Antarctic bacterium Pseudoalteromonas haloplanktis TAC125 gives the opportunity to explore the cellular strategies adopted in vivo by cold-adapted microorganisms to cope with cold and high oxygen concentration. Understanding the molecular mechanisms underlying how a range of Antarctic organisms have responded to climate change in the past will enable predictions as to how they and other species will adapt to global climate change, in terms of physiological function, distribution patterns and ecosystem balance.

  17. JavaGenes Molecular Evolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lohn, Jason; Smith, David; Frank, Jeremy; Globus, Al; Crawford, James

    2007-01-01

    JavaGenes is a general-purpose, evolutionary software system written in Java. It implements several versions of a genetic algorithm, simulated annealing, stochastic hill climbing, and other search techniques. This software has been used to evolve molecules, atomic force field parameters, digital circuits, Earth Observing Satellite schedules, and antennas. This version differs from version 0.7.28 in that it includes the molecule evolution code and other improvements. Except for the antenna code, JaveGenes is available for NASA Open Source distribution.

  18. An Adaptive Threshold in Mammalian Neocortical Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Kalinka, Alex T.; Tomancak, Pavel; Huttner, Wieland B.

    2014-01-01

    Expansion of the neocortex is a hallmark of human evolution. However, determining which adaptive mechanisms facilitated its expansion remains an open question. Here we show, using the gyrencephaly index (GI) and other physiological and life-history data for 102 mammalian species, that gyrencephaly is an ancestral mammalian trait. We find that variation in GI does not evolve linearly across species, but that mammals constitute two principal groups above and below a GI threshold value of 1.5, approximately equal to 109 neurons, which may be characterized by distinct constellations of physiological and life-history traits. By integrating data on neurogenic period, neuroepithelial founder pool size, cell-cycle length, progenitor-type abundances, and cortical neuron number into discrete mathematical models, we identify symmetric proliferative divisions of basal progenitors in the subventricular zone of the developing neocortex as evolutionarily necessary for generating a 14-fold increase in daily prenatal neuron production, traversal of the GI threshold, and thus establishment of two principal groups. We conclude that, despite considerable neuroanatomical differences, changes in the length of the neurogenic period alone, rather than any novel neurogenic progenitor lineage, are sufficient to explain differences in neuron number and neocortical size between species within the same principal group. PMID:25405475

  19. Adaptive evolution of rbcL in Conocephalum (Hepaticae, bryophytes).

    PubMed

    Miwa, Hidetsugu; Odrzykoski, Ireneusz J; Matsui, Atsushi; Hasegawa, Masami; Akiyama, Hiroyuki; Jia, Yu; Sabirov, Renat; Takahashi, Hideki; Boufford, David E; Murakami, Noriaki

    2009-07-15

    An excess of nonsynonymous substitutions over synonymous ones has been regarded as an important indicator of adaptive evolution or positive selection at the molecular level. We now report such a case for rbcL sequences among cryptic species in Conocephalum (Hepaticae, Bryophytes). This finding can be regarded as evidence of adaptive evolution in several cryptic species (especially in F and JN types) within the genus. Bryophytes are small land plants with simple morphology. We can therefore expect the existence of several biologically distinct units or cryptic species within each morphological species. In our previous study, we found three rbcL types in Asian Conocephalum japonicum (Thunb.) Grolle and also found evidence strongly suggesting that the three types are reproductively isolated cryptic species. Additionally, we examined rbcL sequence variation in six cryptic species of C. conicum (L.) Dumort. previously recognized by allozyme analyses. As a result, we were able to discriminate the six cryptic species based only on their rbcL sequences. We were able to show that rbcL sequence variation is also useful in finding cryptic species of C. conicum.

  20. Genetic recombination and molecular evolution.

    PubMed

    Charlesworth, B; Betancourt, A J; Kaiser, V B; Gordo, I

    2009-01-01

    Reduced rates of genetic recombination are often associated with reduced genetic variability and levels of adaptation. Several different evolutionary processes, collectively known as Hill-Robertson (HR) effects, have been proposed as causes of these correlates of recombination. Here, we use DNA sequence polymorphism and divergence data from the noncrossing over dot chromosome of Drosophila to discriminate between two of the major forms of HR effects: selective sweeps and background selection. This chromosome shows reduced levels of silent variability and reduced effectiveness of selection. We show that neither model fits the data on variability. We propose that, in large genomic regions with restricted recombination, HR effects among nonsynonymous mutations undermine the effective strength of selection, so that their background selection effects are weakened. This modified model fits the data on variability and also explains why variability in very large nonrecombining genomes is not completely wiped out. We also show that HR effects of this type can produce an individual selection advantage to recombination, as well as greatly reduce the mean fitness of nonrecombining genomes and genomic regions.

  1. Molecular musings in microbial ecology and evolution

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    A few major discoveries have influenced how ecologists and evolutionists study microbes. Here, in the format of an interview, we answer questions that directly relate to how these discoveries are perceived in these two branches of microbiology, and how they have impacted on both scientific thinking and methodology. The first question is "What has been the influence of the 'Universal Tree of Life' based on molecular markers?" For evolutionists, the tree was a tool to understand the past of known (cultured) organisms, mapping the invention of various physiologies on the evolutionary history of microbes. For ecologists the tree was a guide to discover the current diversity of unknown (uncultured) organisms, without much knowledge of their physiology. The second question we ask is "What was the impact of discovering frequent lateral gene transfer among microbes?" In evolutionary microbiology, frequent lateral gene transfer (LGT) made a simple description of relationships between organisms impossible, and for microbial ecologists, functions could not be easily linked to specific genotypes. Both fields initially resisted LGT, but methods or topics of inquiry were eventually changed in one to incorporate LGT in its theoretical models (evolution) and in the other to achieve its goals despite that phenomenon (ecology). The third and last question we ask is "What are the implications of the unexpected extent of diversity?" The variation in the extent of diversity between organisms invalidated the universality of species definitions based on molecular criteria, a major obstacle to the adaptation of models developed for the study of macroscopic eukaryotes to evolutionary microbiology. This issue has not overtly affected microbial ecology, as it had already abandoned species in favor of the more flexible operational taxonomic units. This field is nonetheless moving away from traditional methods to measure diversity, as they do not provide enough resolution to uncover what lies

  2. Evolution of egg coats: linking molecular biology and ecology.

    PubMed

    Shu, Longfei; Suter, Marc J-F; Räsänen, Katja

    2015-08-01

    One central goal of evolutionary biology is to explain how biological diversity emerges and is maintained in nature. Given the complexity of the phenotype and the multifaceted nature of inheritance, modern evolutionary ecological studies rely heavily on the use of molecular tools. Here, we show how molecular tools help to gain insight into the role of egg coats (i.e. the extracellular structures surrounding eggs and embryos) in evolutionary diversification. Egg coats are maternally derived structures that have many biological functions from mediating fertilization to protecting the embryo from environmental hazards. They show great molecular, structural and functional diversity across species, but intraspecific variability and the role of ecology in egg coat evolution have largely been overlooked. Given that much of the variation that influences egg coat function is ultimately determined by their molecular phenotype, cutting-edge molecular tools (e.g. proteomics, glycomics and transcriptomics), combined with functional assays, are needed for rigorous inferences on their evolutionary ecology. Here, we identify key research areas and highlight emerging molecular techniques that can increase our understanding of the role of egg coats in the evolution of biological diversity, from adaptation to speciation.

  3. Sociality and the rate of molecular evolution.

    PubMed

    Bromham, Lindell; Leys, Remko

    2005-06-01

    The molecular clock does not tick at a uniform rate in all taxa but may be influenced by species characteristics. Eusocial species (those with reproductive division of labor) have been predicted to have faster rates of molecular evolution than their nonsocial relatives because of greatly reduced effective population size; if most individuals in a population are nonreproductive and only one or few queens produce all the offspring, then eusocial animals could have much lower effective population sizes than their solitary relatives, which should increase the rate of substitution of "nearly neutral" mutations. An earlier study reported faster rates in eusocial honeybees and vespid wasps but failed to correct for phylogenetic nonindependence or to distinguish between potential causes of rate variation. Because sociality has evolved independently in many different lineages, it is possible to conduct a more wide-ranging study to test the generality of the relationship. We have conducted a comparative analysis of 25 phylogenetically independent pairs of social lineages and their nonsocial relatives, including bees, wasps, ants, termites, shrimps, and mole rats, using a range of available DNA sequences (mitochondrial and nuclear DNA coding for proteins and RNAs, and nontranslated sequences). By including a wide range of social taxa, we were able to test whether there is a general influence of sociality on rates of molecular evolution and to test specific predictions of the hypothesis: (1) that social species have faster rates because they have reduced effective population sizes; (2) that mitochondrial genes would show a greater effect of sociality than nuclear genes; and (3) that rates of molecular evolution should be correlated with the degree of sociality. We find no consistent pattern in rates of molecular evolution between social and nonsocial lineages and no evidence that mitochondrial genes show faster rates in social taxa. However, we show that the most highly

  4. Non-adaptive plasticity potentiates rapid adaptive evolution of gene expression in nature.

    PubMed

    Ghalambor, Cameron K; Hoke, Kim L; Ruell, Emily W; Fischer, Eva K; Reznick, David N; Hughes, Kimberly A

    2015-09-17

    Phenotypic plasticity is the capacity for an individual genotype to produce different phenotypes in response to environmental variation. Most traits are plastic, but the degree to which plasticity is adaptive or non-adaptive depends on whether environmentally induced phenotypes are closer or further away from the local optimum. Existing theories make conflicting predictions about whether plasticity constrains or facilitates adaptive evolution. Debate persists because few empirical studies have tested the relationship between initial plasticity and subsequent adaptive evolution in natural populations. Here we show that the direction of plasticity in gene expression is generally opposite to the direction of adaptive evolution. We experimentally transplanted Trinidadian guppies (Poecilia reticulata) adapted to living with cichlid predators to cichlid-free streams, and tested for evolutionary divergence in brain gene expression patterns after three to four generations. We find 135 transcripts that evolved parallel changes in expression within the replicated introduction populations. These changes are in the same direction exhibited in a native cichlid-free population, suggesting rapid adaptive evolution. We find 89% of these transcripts exhibited non-adaptive plastic changes in expression when the source population was reared in the absence of predators, as they are in the opposite direction to the evolved changes. By contrast, the remaining transcripts exhibiting adaptive plasticity show reduced population divergence. Furthermore, the most plastic transcripts in the source population evolved reduced plasticity in the introduction populations, suggesting strong selection against non-adaptive plasticity. These results support models predicting that adaptive plasticity constrains evolution, whereas non-adaptive plasticity potentiates evolution by increasing the strength of directional selection. The role of non-adaptive plasticity in evolution has received relatively

  5. Molecular mechanisms of dominance evolution in Müllerian mimicry.

    PubMed

    Llaurens, V; Joron, M; Billiard, S

    2015-12-01

    Natural selection acting on dominance between adaptive alleles at polymorphic loci can be sufficiently strong for dominance to evolve. However, the molecular mechanisms underlying such evolution are generally unknown. Here, using Müllerian mimicry as a case-study for adaptive morphological variation, we present a theoretical analysis of the invasion of dominance modifiers altering gene expression through different molecular mechanisms. Toxic species involved in Müllerian mimicry exhibit warning coloration, and converge morphologically with other toxic species of the local community, due to positive frequency-dependent selection acting on these colorations. Polymorphism in warning coloration may be maintained by migration-selection balance with fine scale spatial heterogeneity. We modeled a dominance modifier locus altering the expression of the warning coloration locus, targeting one or several alleles, acting in cis or trans, and either enhancing or repressing expression. We confirmed that dominance could evolve when balanced polymorphism was maintained at the color locus. Dominance evolution could result from modifiers enhancing one allele specifically, irrespective of their linkage with the targeted locus. Nonspecific enhancers could also persist in populations, at frequencies tightly depending on their linkage with the targeted locus. Altogether, our results identify which mechanisms of expression alteration could lead to dominance evolution in polymorphic mimicry.

  6. Adaptive Protein Evolution in Animals and the Effective Population Size Hypothesis.

    PubMed

    Galtier, Nicolas

    2016-01-01

    The rate at which genomes adapt to environmental changes and the prevalence of adaptive processes in molecular evolution are two controversial issues in current evolutionary genetics. Previous attempts to quantify the genome-wide rate of adaptation through amino-acid substitution have revealed a surprising diversity of patterns, with some species (e.g. Drosophila) experiencing a very high adaptive rate, while other (e.g. humans) are dominated by nearly-neutral processes. It has been suggested that this discrepancy reflects between-species differences in effective population size. Published studies, however, were mainly focused on model organisms, and relied on disparate data sets and methodologies, so that an overview of the prevalence of adaptive protein evolution in nature is currently lacking. Here we extend existing estimators of the amino-acid adaptive rate by explicitly modelling the effect of favourable mutations on non-synonymous polymorphism patterns, and we apply these methods to a newly-built, homogeneous data set of 44 non-model animal species pairs. Data analysis uncovers a major contribution of adaptive evolution to the amino-acid substitution process across all major metazoan phyla-with the notable exception of humans and primates. The proportion of adaptive amino-acid substitution is found to be positively correlated to species effective population size. This relationship, however, appears to be primarily driven by a decreased rate of nearly-neutral amino-acid substitution because of more efficient purifying selection in large populations. Our results reveal that adaptive processes dominate the evolution of proteins in most animal species, but do not corroborate the hypothesis that adaptive substitutions accumulate at a faster rate in large populations. Implications regarding the factors influencing the rate of adaptive evolution and positive selection detection in humans vs. other organisms are discussed. PMID:26752180

  7. Adaptive Protein Evolution in Animals and the Effective Population Size Hypothesis

    PubMed Central

    Galtier, Nicolas

    2016-01-01

    The rate at which genomes adapt to environmental changes and the prevalence of adaptive processes in molecular evolution are two controversial issues in current evolutionary genetics. Previous attempts to quantify the genome-wide rate of adaptation through amino-acid substitution have revealed a surprising diversity of patterns, with some species (e.g. Drosophila) experiencing a very high adaptive rate, while other (e.g. humans) are dominated by nearly-neutral processes. It has been suggested that this discrepancy reflects between-species differences in effective population size. Published studies, however, were mainly focused on model organisms, and relied on disparate data sets and methodologies, so that an overview of the prevalence of adaptive protein evolution in nature is currently lacking. Here we extend existing estimators of the amino-acid adaptive rate by explicitly modelling the effect of favourable mutations on non-synonymous polymorphism patterns, and we apply these methods to a newly-built, homogeneous data set of 44 non-model animal species pairs. Data analysis uncovers a major contribution of adaptive evolution to the amino-acid substitution process across all major metazoan phyla—with the notable exception of humans and primates. The proportion of adaptive amino-acid substitution is found to be positively correlated to species effective population size. This relationship, however, appears to be primarily driven by a decreased rate of nearly-neutral amino-acid substitution because of more efficient purifying selection in large populations. Our results reveal that adaptive processes dominate the evolution of proteins in most animal species, but do not corroborate the hypothesis that adaptive substitutions accumulate at a faster rate in large populations. Implications regarding the factors influencing the rate of adaptive evolution and positive selection detection in humans vs. other organisms are discussed. PMID:26752180

  8. Contributions of plant molecular systematics to studies of molecular evolution.

    PubMed

    Soltis, E D; Soltis, P S

    2000-01-01

    Dobzhansky stated that nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution. A close corollary, and the central theme of this paper, is that everything makes a lot more sense in the light of phylogeny. Systematics is in the midst of a renaissance, heralded by the widespread application of new analytical approaches and the introduction of molecular techniques. Molecular phylogenetic analyses are now commonplace, and they have provided unparalleled insights into relationships at all levels of plant phylogeny. At deep levels, molecular studies have revealed that charophyte green algae are the closest relatives of the land plants and suggested that liverworts are sister to all other extant land plants. Other studies have suggested that lycopods are sister to all other vascular plants and clarified relationships among the ferns. The impact of molecular phylogenetics on the angiosperms has been particularly dramatic--some of the largest phylogenetic analyses yet conducted have involved the angiosperms. Inferences from three genes (rbcL, atpB, 18S rDNA) agree in the major features of angiosperm phylogeny and have resulted in a reclassification of the angiosperms. This ordinal-level reclassification is perhaps the most dramatic and important change in higher-level angiosperm taxonomy in the past 200 years. At lower taxonomic levels, phylogenetic analyses have revealed the closest relatives of many crops and 'model organisms' for studies of molecular genetics, concomitantly pointing to possible relatives for use in comparative studies and plant breeding. Furthermore, phylogenetic information has contributed to new perspectives on the evolution of polyploid genomes. The phylogenetic trees now available at all levels of the taxonomic hierarchy for angiosperms and other green plants should play a pivotal role in comparative studies in diverse fields from ecology to molecular evolution and comparative genetics.

  9. Urban Evolution: The Role of Water and Adaptation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kaushal, S.

    2015-12-01

    The structure, function, and services of urban ecosystems evolve over time scales from seconds to centuries as Earth's population grows, infrastructure ages, and management decisions alter them. The concept of "urban evolution" was proposed in order to study changes in urban ecosystems over time. Urban evolution has exerted a major influence on Earth's water and elemental cycles from local to global scales over human history. A current understanding of urban evolution allows urban planning, management, and restoration to move beyond reactive management to predictive management. We explore two key mechanisms of urban evolution, urban selective pressure and adaptation, and their relationship to the evolution of modern water and biogeochemical cycles. Urban selective pressure is an environmental or societal driver contributing to urban adaptation. Urban adaptation is the sequential process by which an urban structure, function, or services becomes more fitted to its changing environment or human choices. We show how hydrological and biogeochemical traits evolve across successive generations of urban ecosystems via shifts in selective pressures and adaptations. We also discuss how urban evolution can be divided into distinct stages and transition periods of growth and expansion and decay and repair during the Anthropocene epoch. We explore multiple examples and drivers of urban evolution and adaptations including the role of unintended consequences and societal drivers. We also present a conceptual model for the evolution of urban waters from the Industrial Revolution to the present day emphasizing the role of urban adaptations in response to selective pressures. Finally, we conclude by proposing new concepts and questions for future research related to the urban evolution of water, material, and energy cycles.

  10. Evolution of molecular phenotypes under stabilizing selection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nourmohammad, Armita; Schiffels, Stephan; Lässig, Michael

    2013-01-01

    Molecular phenotypes are important links between genomic information and organismic functions, fitness, and evolution. Complex phenotypes, which are also called quantitative traits, often depend on multiple genomic loci. Their evolution builds on genome evolution in a complicated way, which involves selection, genetic drift, mutations and recombination. Here we develop a coarse-grained evolutionary statistics for phenotypes, which decouples from details of the underlying genotypes. We derive approximate evolution equations for the distribution of phenotype values within and across populations. This dynamics covers evolutionary processes at high and low recombination rates, that is, it applies to sexual and asexual populations. In a fitness landscape with a single optimal phenotype value, the phenotypic diversity within populations and the divergence between populations reach evolutionary equilibria, which describe stabilizing selection. We compute the equilibrium distributions of both quantities analytically and we show that the ratio of mean divergence and diversity depends on the strength of selection in a universal way: it is largely independent of the phenotype’s genomic encoding and of the recombination rate. This establishes a new method for the inference of selection on molecular phenotypes beyond the genome level. We discuss the implications of our findings for the predictability of evolutionary processes.

  11. Adaptive evolution of relish, a Drosophila NF-kappaB/IkappaB protein.

    PubMed

    Begun, D J; Whitley, P

    2000-03-01

    NF-kappaB and IkappaB proteins have central roles in regulation of inflammation and innate immunity in mammals. Homologues of these proteins also play an important role in regulation of the Drosophila immune response. Here we present a molecular population genetic analysis of Relish, a Drosophila NF-kappaB/IkappaB protein, in Drosophila simulans and D. melanogaster. We find strong evidence for adaptive protein evolution in D. simulans, but not in D. melanogaster. The adaptive evolution appears to be restricted to the IkappaB domain. A possible explanation for these results is that Relish is a site of evolutionary conflict between flies and their microbial pathogens.

  12. Neisserial Molecular Adaptations to the Nasopharyngeal Niche.

    PubMed

    Laver, Jay R; Hughes, Sara E; Read, Robert C

    2015-01-01

    The exclusive reservoir of the genus Neisseria is the human. Of the broad range of species that comprise the Neisseria, only two are frequently pathogenic, and only one of those is a resident of the nasopharynx. Although Neisseria meningitidis can cause severe disease if it invades the bloodstream, the vast majority of interactions between humans and Neisseria are benign, with the bacteria inhabiting its mucosal niche as a non-invasive commensal. Understandably, with the exception of Neisseria gonorrhoeae, which preferentially colonises the urogenital tract, the neisseriae are extremely well adapted to survival in the human nasopharynx, their sole biological niche. The purpose of this review is to provide an overview of the molecular mechanisms evolved by Neisseria to facilitate colonisation and survival within the nasopharynx, focussing on N. meningitidis. The organism has adapted to survive in aerosolised transmission and to attach to mucosal surfaces. It then has to replicate in a nutrition-poor environment and resist immune and competitive pressure within a polymicrobial complex. Temperature and relative gas concentrations (nitric oxide and oxygen) are likely to be potent initial signals of arrival within the nasopharyngeal environment, and this review will focus on how N. meningitidis responds to these to increase the likelihood of its survival. PMID:26210107

  13. Evolution of niche width and adaptive diversification.

    PubMed

    Ackermann, Martin; Doebeli, Michael

    2004-12-01

    Theoretical models suggest that resource competition can lead to the adaptive splitting of consumer populations into diverging lineages, that is, to adaptive diversification. In general, diversification is likely if consumers use only a narrow range of resources and thus have a small niche width. Here we use analytical and numerical methods to study the consequences for diversification if the niche width itself evolves. We found that the evolutionary outcome depends on the inherent costs or benefits of widening the niche. If widening the niche did not have costs in terms of overall resource uptake, then the consumer evolved a niche that was wide enough for disruptive selection on the niche position to vanish; adaptive diversification was no longer observed. However, if widening the niche was costly, then the niche widths remained relatively narrow, allowing for adaptive diversification in niche position. Adaptive diversification and speciation resulting from competition for a broadly distributed resource is thus likely if the niche width is fixed and relatively narrow or free to evolve but subject to costs. These results refine the conditions for adaptive diversification due to competition and formulate them in a way that might be more amenable for experimental investigations. PMID:15696740

  14. Fitness seascapes and adaptive evolution of the influenza virus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lassig, Michael

    2014-03-01

    The seasonal human influenza A virus undergoes rapid genome evolution. This process is triggered by interactions with the host immune system and produces significant year-to-year sequence turnover in the population of circulating viral strains. We develop a dynamical fitness model that predicts the evolution of the viral population from one year to the next. Two factors are shown to determine the fitness of a viral strain: adaptive changes, which are under positive selection, and deleterious mutations, which affect conserved viral functions such as protein stability. Combined with the influenza strain tree, this fitness model maps the adaptive history of influenza A. We discuss the implications of our results for the statistical theory of adaptive evolution in asexual populations. Based on this and related systems, we touch upon the fundamental question of when evolution can be predicted. Joint work with Marta Luksza, Columbia University.

  15. Detecting Non-Brownian Trait Evolution in Adaptive Radiations

    PubMed Central

    Freckleton, Robert P; Harvey, Paul H

    2006-01-01

    Many phylogenetic comparative methods that are currently widely used in the scientific literature assume a Brownian motion model for trait evolution, but the suitability of that model is rarely tested, and a number of important factors might affect whether this model is appropriate or not. For instance, we might expect evolutionary change in adaptive radiations to be driven by the availability of ecological niches. Such evolution has been shown to produce patterns of change that are different from those modelled by the Brownian process. We applied two tests for the assumption of Brownian motion that generally have high power to reject data generated under non-Brownian niche-filling models for the evolution of traits in adaptive radiations. As a case study, we used these tests to explore the evolution of feeding adaptations in two radiations of warblers. In one case, the patterns revealed do not accord with Brownian motion but show characteristics expected under certain niche-filling models. PMID:17090217

  16. Detecting non-Brownian trait evolution in adaptive radiations.

    PubMed

    Freckleton, Robert P; Harvey, Paul H

    2006-11-01

    Many phylogenetic comparative methods that are currently widely used in the scientific literature assume a Brownian motion model for trait evolution, but the suitability of that model is rarely tested, and a number of important factors might affect whether this model is appropriate or not. For instance, we might expect evolutionary change in adaptive radiations to be driven by the availability of ecological niches. Such evolution has been shown to produce patterns of change that are different from those modelled by the Brownian process. We applied two tests for the assumption of Brownian motion that generally have high power to reject data generated under non-Brownian niche-filling models for the evolution of traits in adaptive radiations. As a case study, we used these tests to explore the evolution of feeding adaptations in two radiations of warblers. In one case, the patterns revealed do not accord with Brownian motion but show characteristics expected under certain niche-filling models. PMID:17090217

  17. Rapid evolution of adaptive niche construction in experimental microbial populations.

    PubMed

    Callahan, Benjamin J; Fukami, Tadashi; Fisher, Daniel S

    2014-11-01

    Many species engage in adaptive niche construction: modification of the local environment that increases the modifying organism's competitive fitness. Adaptive niche construction provides an alternative pathway to higher fitness, shaping the environment rather than conforming to it. Yet, experimental evidence for the evolutionary emergence of adaptive niche construction is lacking, leaving its role in evolution uncertain. Here we report a direct observation of the de novo evolution of adaptive niche construction in populations of the bacteria Pseudomonas fluorescens. In a laboratory experiment, we allowed several bacterial populations to adapt to a novel environment and assessed whether niche construction evolved over time. We found that adaptive niche construction emerged rapidly, within approximately 100 generations, and became ubiquitous after approximately 400 generations. The large fitness effect of this niche construction was dominated by the low fitness of evolved strains in the ancestrally modified environment: evolved niche constructors were highly dependent on their specific environmental modifications. Populations were subjected to frequent resetting of environmental conditions and severe reduction of spatial habitat structure, both of which are thought to make adaptive niche construction difficult to evolve. Our finding that adaptive niche construction nevertheless evolved repeatably suggests that it may play a more important role in evolution than generally thought.

  18. Go forth, evolve and prosper: the genetic basis of adaptive evolution in an invasive species.

    PubMed

    Franks, Steven J; Munshi-South, Jason

    2014-05-01

    Invasive species stand accused of a familiar litany of offences, including displacing native species, disrupting ecological processes and causing billions of dollars in ecological damage (Cox 1999). Despite these transgressions, invasive species have at least one redeeming virtue--they offer us an unparalleled opportunity to investigate colonization and responses of populations to novel conditions in the invaded habitat (Elton 1958; Sakai et al. 2001). Invasive species are by definition colonists that have arrived and thrived in a new location. How they are able to thrive is of great interest, especially considering a paradox of invasion (Sax & Brown 2000): if many populations are locally adapted (Leimu & Fischer 2008), how could species introduced into new locations become so successful? One possibility is that populations adjust to the new conditions through plasticity--increasing production of allelopathic compounds (novel weapons), or taking advantage of new prey, for example. Alternatively, evolution could play a role, with the populations adapting to the novel conditions of the new habitat. There is increasing evidence, based on phenotypic data, for rapid adaptive evolution in invasive species (Franks et al. 2012; Colautti & Barrett 2013; Sultan et al. 2013). Prior studies have also demonstrated genetic changes in introduced populations using neutral markers, which generally do not provide information on adaptation. Thus, the genetic basis of adaptive evolution in invasive species has largely remained unknown. In this issue of Molecular Ecology, Vandepitte et al. (2014) provide some of the first evidence in invasive populations for molecular genetic changes directly linked to adaptation.

  19. Venom Evolution: Gene Loss Shapes Phenotypic Adaptation.

    PubMed

    Casewell, Nicholas R

    2016-09-26

    Snake venoms are variable protein mixtures with a multitude of bioactivities. New work shows, surprisingly, that it is the loss of toxin-encoding genes that strongly influences venom function in rattlesnakes, highlighting how gene loss can underpin adaptive phenotypic change. PMID:27676304

  20. Molecular evolution of vertebrate visual pigments.

    PubMed

    Yokoyama, S

    2000-07-01

    Dramatic improvement of our understanding of the genetic basis of vision was brought by the molecular characterization of the bovine rhodopsin gene and the human rhodopsin and color opsin genes (Nathans and Hogness, 1983; Nathans et al., 1984, 1986a,b). The availability of cDNA clones from these studies has facilitated the isolation of retinal and nonretinal opsin genes and cDNA clones from a large variety of species. Today, the number of genomic and cDNA clones of opsin genes isolated from different vertebrate species exceeds 100 and is increasing rapidly. The opsin gene sequences reveal the importance of the origin and differentiation of various opsins and visual pigments. To understand the molecular genetic basis of spectral tuning of visual pigments, it is essential to establish correlations between a series of the sequences of visual pigments and their lambda(max) values. The potentially important amino acid changes identified in this way have to be tested whether they are in fact responsible for the lambda(max)-shifts using site-directed mutagenesis and cultured cells. A major goal of molecular evolutionary genetics is to understand the molecular mechanisms involved in functional adaptations of organisms to different environments, including the mechanisms of the regulation of the spectral absorption. Therefore, both molecular evolutionary analyses of visual pigments and vision science have an important common goal.

  1. Trends in substitution models of molecular evolution

    PubMed Central

    Arenas, Miguel

    2015-01-01

    Substitution models of evolution describe the process of genetic variation through fixed mutations and constitute the basis of the evolutionary analysis at the molecular level. Almost 40 years after the development of first substitution models, highly sophisticated, and data-specific substitution models continue emerging with the aim of better mimicking real evolutionary processes. Here I describe current trends in substitution models of DNA, codon and amino acid sequence evolution, including advantages and pitfalls of the most popular models. The perspective concludes that despite the large number of currently available substitution models, further research is required for more realistic modeling, especially for DNA coding and amino acid data. Additionally, the development of more accurate complex models should be coupled with new implementations and improvements of methods and frameworks for substitution model selection and downstream evolutionary analysis. PMID:26579193

  2. Trends in substitution models of molecular evolution.

    PubMed

    Arenas, Miguel

    2015-01-01

    Substitution models of evolution describe the process of genetic variation through fixed mutations and constitute the basis of the evolutionary analysis at the molecular level. Almost 40 years after the development of first substitution models, highly sophisticated, and data-specific substitution models continue emerging with the aim of better mimicking real evolutionary processes. Here I describe current trends in substitution models of DNA, codon and amino acid sequence evolution, including advantages and pitfalls of the most popular models. The perspective concludes that despite the large number of currently available substitution models, further research is required for more realistic modeling, especially for DNA coding and amino acid data. Additionally, the development of more accurate complex models should be coupled with new implementations and improvements of methods and frameworks for substitution model selection and downstream evolutionary analysis. PMID:26579193

  3. Molecular evolution of aerobic energy metabolism in primates.

    PubMed

    Grossman, L I; Schmidt, T R; Wildman, D E; Goodman, M

    2001-01-01

    As part of our goal to reconstruct human evolution at the DNA level, we have been examining changes in the biochemical machinery for aerobic energy metabolism. We find that protein subunits of two of the electron transfer complexes, complex III and complex IV, and cytochrome c, the protein carrier that connects them, have all undergone a period of rapid protein evolution in the anthropoid lineage that ultimately led to humans. Indeed, subunit IV of cytochrome c oxidase (COX; complex IV) provides one of the best examples of positively selected changes of any protein studied. The rate of subunit IV evolution accelerated in our catarrhine ancestors in the period between 40 to 18 million years ago and then decelerated in the descendant hominid lineages, a pattern of rate changes indicative of positive selection of adaptive changes followed by purifying selection acting against further changes. Besides clear evidence that adaptive evolution occurred for cytochrome c and subunits of complexes III (e.g., cytochrome c(1)) and IV (e.g., COX2 and COX4), modest rate accelerations in the lineage that led to humans are seen for other subunits of both complexes. In addition the contractile muscle-specific isoform of COX subunit VIII became a pseudogene in an anthropoid ancestor of humans but appears to be a functional gene in the nonanthropoid primates. These changes in the aerobic energy complexes coincide with the expansion of the energy-dependent neocortex during the emergence of the higher primates. Discovering the biochemical adaptations suggested by molecular evolutionary analysis will be an exciting challenge.

  4. Genomic mutation rates that neutralize adaptive evolution and natural selection.

    PubMed

    Gerrish, Philip J; Colato, Alexandre; Sniegowski, Paul D

    2013-08-01

    When mutation rates are low, natural selection remains effective, and increasing the mutation rate can give rise to an increase in adaptation rate. When mutation rates are high to begin with, however, increasing the mutation rate may have a detrimental effect because of the overwhelming presence of deleterious mutations. Indeed, if mutation rates are high enough: (i) adaptive evolution may be neutralized, resulting in a zero (or negative) adaptation rate despite the continued availability of adaptive and/or compensatory mutations, or (ii) natural selection may be neutralized, because the fitness of lineages bearing adaptive and/or compensatory mutations--whether established or newly arising--is eroded by excessive mutation, causing such lineages to decline in frequency. We apply these two criteria to a standard model of asexual adaptive evolution and derive mathematical expressions--some new, some old in new guise--delineating the mutation rates under which either adaptive evolution or natural selection is neutralized. The expressions are simple and require no a priori knowledge of organism- and/or environment-specific parameters. Our discussion connects these results to each other and to previous theory, showing convergence or equivalence of the different results in most cases.

  5. Genomic mutation rates that neutralize adaptive evolution and natural selection.

    PubMed

    Gerrish, Philip J; Colato, Alexandre; Sniegowski, Paul D

    2013-08-01

    When mutation rates are low, natural selection remains effective, and increasing the mutation rate can give rise to an increase in adaptation rate. When mutation rates are high to begin with, however, increasing the mutation rate may have a detrimental effect because of the overwhelming presence of deleterious mutations. Indeed, if mutation rates are high enough: (i) adaptive evolution may be neutralized, resulting in a zero (or negative) adaptation rate despite the continued availability of adaptive and/or compensatory mutations, or (ii) natural selection may be neutralized, because the fitness of lineages bearing adaptive and/or compensatory mutations--whether established or newly arising--is eroded by excessive mutation, causing such lineages to decline in frequency. We apply these two criteria to a standard model of asexual adaptive evolution and derive mathematical expressions--some new, some old in new guise--delineating the mutation rates under which either adaptive evolution or natural selection is neutralized. The expressions are simple and require no a priori knowledge of organism- and/or environment-specific parameters. Our discussion connects these results to each other and to previous theory, showing convergence or equivalence of the different results in most cases. PMID:23720539

  6. Stress-directed adaptive mutations and evolution.

    PubMed

    Wright, Barbara E

    2004-05-01

    Comparative biochemistry demonstrates that the metabolites, complex biochemical networks, enzymes and regulatory mechanisms essential to all living cells are conserved in amazing detail throughout evolution. Thus, in order to evolve, an organism must overcome new adverse conditions without creating different but equally dangerous alterations in its ongoing successful metabolic relationship with its environment. Evidence suggests that stable long-term acquisitive evolution results from minor increases in mutation rates of genes related to a particular stress, with minimal disturbance to the balanced and resilient metabolism critical for responding to an unpredictable environment. Microorganisms have evolved specific biochemical feedback mechanisms that direct mutations to genes derepressed by starvation or other stressors in their environment. Transcription of the activated genes creates localized supercoiling and DNA secondary structures with unpaired bases vulnerable to mutation. The resulting mutants provide appropriate variants for selection by the stress involved, thus accelerating evolution with minimal random damage to the genome. This model has successfully predicted mutation frequencies in genes of E. coli and humans. Stressed cells observed in the laboratory over hundreds of generations accumulate mutations that also arise by this mechanism. When this occurs in repair-deficient mutator strains with high rates of random mutation, the specific stress-directed mutations are also enhanced.

  7. The Stochastic Edge in Adaptive Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Brunet, Éric; Rouzine, Igor M.; Wilke, Claus O.

    2008-01-01

    In a recent article, Desai and Fisher proposed that the speed of adaptation in an asexual population is determined by the dynamics of the stochastic edge of the population, that is, by the emergence and subsequent establishment of rare mutants that exceed the fitness of all sequences currently present in the population. Desai and Fisher perform an elaborate stochastic calculation of the mean time τ until a new class of mutants has been established and interpret 1/τ as the speed of adaptation. As they note, however, their calculations are valid only for moderate speeds. This limitation arises from their method to determine τ: Desai and Fisher back extrapolate the value of τ from the best-fit class's exponential growth at infinite time. This approach is not valid when the population adapts rapidly, because in this case the best-fit class grows nonexponentially during the relevant time interval. Here, we substantially extend Desai and Fisher's analysis of the stochastic edge. We show that we can apply Desai and Fisher's method to high speeds by either exponentially back extrapolating from finite time or using a nonexponential back extrapolation. Our results are compatible with predictions made using a different analytical approach (Rouzine et al.) and agree well with numerical simulations. PMID:18493075

  8. An Adaptive Unified Differential Evolution Algorithm for Global Optimization

    SciTech Connect

    Qiang, Ji; Mitchell, Chad

    2014-11-03

    In this paper, we propose a new adaptive unified differential evolution algorithm for single-objective global optimization. Instead of the multiple mutation strate- gies proposed in conventional differential evolution algorithms, this algorithm employs a single equation unifying multiple strategies into one expression. It has the virtue of mathematical simplicity and also provides users the flexibility for broader exploration of the space of mutation operators. By making all control parameters in the proposed algorithm self-adaptively evolve during the process of optimization, it frees the application users from the burden of choosing appro- priate control parameters and also improves the performance of the algorithm. In numerical tests using thirteen basic unimodal and multimodal functions, the proposed adaptive unified algorithm shows promising performance in compari- son to several conventional differential evolution algorithms.

  9. Molecular adaptation of telomere associated genes in mammals

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background Placental mammals display a huge range of life history traits, including size, longevity, metabolic rate and germ line generation time. Although a number of general trends have been proposed between these traits, there are exceptions that warrant further investigation. Species such as naked mole rat, human and certain bat species all exhibit extreme longevity with respect to body size. It has long been established that telomeres and telomere maintenance have a clear role in ageing but it has not yet been established whether there is evidence for adaptation in telomere maintenance proteins that could account for increased longevity in these species. Results Here we carry out a molecular investigation of selective pressure variation, specifically focusing on telomere associated genes across placental mammals. In general we observe a large number of instances of positive selection acting on telomere genes. Although these signatures of selection overall are not significantly correlated with either longevity or body size we do identify positive selection in the microbat species Myotis lucifugus in functionally important regions of the telomere maintenance genes DKC1 and TERT, and in naked mole rat in the DNA repair gene BRCA1. Conclusion These results demonstrate the multifarious selective pressures acting across the mammal phylogeny driving lineage-specific adaptations of telomere associated genes. Our results show that regardless of the longevity of a species, these proteins have evolved under positive selection thereby removing increased longevity as the single selective force driving this rapid rate of evolution. However, evidence of molecular adaptations specific to naked mole rat and Myotis lucifugus highlight functionally significant regions in genes that may alter the way in which telomeres are regulated and maintained in these longer-lived species. PMID:24237966

  10. Convergent Evolution During Local Adaptation to Patchy Landscapes

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Species often encounter, and adapt to, many patches of similar environmental conditions across their range. Such adaptation can occur through convergent evolution if different alleles arise in different patches, or through the spread of shared alleles by migration acting to synchronize adaptation across the species. The tension between the two reflects the constraint imposed on evolution by the underlying genetic architecture versus how effectively selection and geographic isolation act to inhibit the geographic spread of locally adapted alleles. This paper studies the balance between these two routes to adaptation in a model of continuous environments with patchy selection pressures. We address the following questions: How long does it take for a novel allele to appear in a patch where it is locally adapted through mutation? Or, through migration from another, already adapted patch? Which is more likely to occur, as a function of distance between the patches? What population genetic signal is left by the spread of migrant alleles? To answer these questions we examine the family structure underlying migration–selection equilibrium surrounding an already adapted patch, treating those rare families that reach new patches as spatial branching processes. A main result is that patches further apart than a critical distance will likely evolve independent locally adapted alleles; this distance is proportional to the spatial scale of selection (σ/sm, where σ is the dispersal distance and s m is the selective disadvantage of these alleles between patches), and depends linearly on log(s m/μ), where μ is the mutation rate. This provides a way to understand the role of geographic separation between patches in promoting convergent adaptation and the genomic signals it leaves behind. We illustrate these ideas using the convergent evolution of cryptic coloration in the rock pocket mouse, Chaetodipus intermedius, as an empirical example. PMID:26571125

  11. Convergent Evolution During Local Adaptation to Patchy Landscapes.

    PubMed

    Ralph, Peter L; Coop, Graham

    2015-11-01

    Species often encounter, and adapt to, many patches of similar environmental conditions across their range. Such adaptation can occur through convergent evolution if different alleles arise in different patches, or through the spread of shared alleles by migration acting to synchronize adaptation across the species. The tension between the two reflects the constraint imposed on evolution by the underlying genetic architecture versus how effectively selection and geographic isolation act to inhibit the geographic spread of locally adapted alleles. This paper studies the balance between these two routes to adaptation in a model of continuous environments with patchy selection pressures. We address the following questions: How long does it take for a novel allele to appear in a patch where it is locally adapted through mutation? Or, through migration from another, already adapted patch? Which is more likely to occur, as a function of distance between the patches? What population genetic signal is left by the spread of migrant alleles? To answer these questions we examine the family structure underlying migration-selection equilibrium surrounding an already adapted patch, treating those rare families that reach new patches as spatial branching processes. A main result is that patches further apart than a critical distance will likely evolve independent locally adapted alleles; this distance is proportional to the spatial scale of selection ([Formula: see text], where σ is the dispersal distance and sm is the selective disadvantage of these alleles between patches), and depends linearly on log(sm/μ), where μ is the mutation rate. This provides a way to understand the role of geographic separation between patches in promoting convergent adaptation and the genomic signals it leaves behind. We illustrate these ideas using the convergent evolution of cryptic coloration in the rock pocket mouse, Chaetodipus intermedius, as an empirical example. PMID:26571125

  12. Evolution of morphological and climatic adaptations in Veronica L. (Plantaginaceae)

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jian-Cheng; Pan, Bo-Rong

    2016-01-01

    Perennials and annuals apply different strategies to adapt to the adverse environment, based on ‘tolerance’ and ‘avoidance’, respectively. To understand lifespan evolution and its impact on plant adaptability, we carried out a comparative study of perennials and annuals in the genus Veronica from a phylogenetic perspective. The results showed that ancestors of the genus Veronicawere likely to be perennial plants. Annual life history of Veronica has evolved multiple times and subtrees with more annual species have a higher substitution rate. Annuals can adapt to more xeric habitats than perennials. This indicates that annuals are more drought-resistant than their perennial relatives. Due to adaptation to similar selective pressures, parallel evolution occurs in morphological characters among annual species of Veronica. PMID:27602296

  13. Evolution of morphological and climatic adaptations in Veronica L. (Plantaginaceae)

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Jian-Cheng; Pan, Bo-Rong

    2016-01-01

    Perennials and annuals apply different strategies to adapt to the adverse environment, based on ‘tolerance’ and ‘avoidance’, respectively. To understand lifespan evolution and its impact on plant adaptability, we carried out a comparative study of perennials and annuals in the genus Veronica from a phylogenetic perspective. The results showed that ancestors of the genus Veronicawere likely to be perennial plants. Annual life history of Veronica has evolved multiple times and subtrees with more annual species have a higher substitution rate. Annuals can adapt to more xeric habitats than perennials. This indicates that annuals are more drought-resistant than their perennial relatives. Due to adaptation to similar selective pressures, parallel evolution occurs in morphological characters among annual species of Veronica.

  14. Evolution of morphological and climatic adaptations in Veronica L. (Plantaginaceae).

    PubMed

    Wang, Jian-Cheng; Pan, Bo-Rong; Albach, Dirk C

    2016-01-01

    Perennials and annuals apply different strategies to adapt to the adverse environment, based on 'tolerance' and 'avoidance', respectively. To understand lifespan evolution and its impact on plant adaptability, we carried out a comparative study of perennials and annuals in the genus Veronica from a phylogenetic perspective. The results showed that ancestors of the genus Veronicawere likely to be perennial plants. Annual life history of Veronica has evolved multiple times and subtrees with more annual species have a higher substitution rate. Annuals can adapt to more xeric habitats than perennials. This indicates that annuals are more drought-resistant than their perennial relatives. Due to adaptation to similar selective pressures, parallel evolution occurs in morphological characters among annual species of Veronica. PMID:27602296

  15. Pax6 in Collembola: Adaptive Evolution of Eye Regression.

    PubMed

    Hou, Ya-Nan; Li, Sheng; Luan, Yun-Xia

    2016-01-01

    Unlike the compound eyes in insects, collembolan eyes are comparatively simple: some species have eyes with different numbers of ocelli (1 + 1 to 8 + 8), and some species have no apparent eye structures. Pax6 is a universal master control gene for eye morphogenesis. In this study, full-length Pax6 cDNAs, Fc-Pax6 and Cd-Pax6, were cloned from an eyeless collembolan (Folsomia candida, soil-dwelling) and an eyed one (Ceratophysella denticulata, surface-dwelling), respectively. Their phylogenetic positions are between the two Pax6 paralogs in insects, eyeless (ey) and twin of eyeless (toy), and their protein sequences are more similar to Ey than to Toy. Both Fc-Pax6 and Cd-Pax6 could induce ectopic eyes in Drosophila, while Fc-Pax6 exhibited much weaker transactivation ability than Cd-Pax6. The C-terminus of collembolan Pax6 is indispensable for its transactivation ability, and determines the differences of transactivation ability between Fc-Pax6 and Cd-Pax6. One of the possible reasons is that Fc-Pax6 accumulated more mutations at some key functional sites of C-terminus under a lower selection pressure on eye development due to the dark habitats of F. candida. The composite data provide a first molecular evidence for the monophyletic origin of collembolan eyes, and indicate the eye degeneration of collembolans is caused by adaptive evolution. PMID:26856893

  16. Pax6 in Collembola: Adaptive Evolution of Eye Regression

    PubMed Central

    Hou, Ya-Nan; Li, Sheng; Luan, Yun-Xia

    2016-01-01

    Unlike the compound eyes in insects, collembolan eyes are comparatively simple: some species have eyes with different numbers of ocelli (1 + 1 to 8 + 8), and some species have no apparent eye structures. Pax6 is a universal master control gene for eye morphogenesis. In this study, full-length Pax6 cDNAs, Fc-Pax6 and Cd-Pax6, were cloned from an eyeless collembolan (Folsomia candida, soil-dwelling) and an eyed one (Ceratophysella denticulata, surface-dwelling), respectively. Their phylogenetic positions are between the two Pax6 paralogs in insects, eyeless (ey) and twin of eyeless (toy), and their protein sequences are more similar to Ey than to Toy. Both Fc-Pax6 and Cd-Pax6 could induce ectopic eyes in Drosophila, while Fc-Pax6 exhibited much weaker transactivation ability than Cd-Pax6. The C-terminus of collembolan Pax6 is indispensable for its transactivation ability, and determines the differences of transactivation ability between Fc-Pax6 and Cd-Pax6. One of the possible reasons is that Fc-Pax6 accumulated more mutations at some key functional sites of C-terminus under a lower selection pressure on eye development due to the dark habitats of F. candida. The composite data provide a first molecular evidence for the monophyletic origin of collembolan eyes, and indicate the eye degeneration of collembolans is caused by adaptive evolution. PMID:26856893

  17. Principles of Adaptive Sorting Revealed by In Silico Evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lalanne, Jean-Benoît; François, Paul

    2013-05-01

    Many biological networks have to filter out useful information from a vast excess of spurious interactions. In this Letter, we use computational evolution to predict design features of networks processing ligand categorization. The important problem of early immune response is considered as a case study. Rounds of evolution with different constraints uncover elaborations of the same network motif we name “adaptive sorting.” Corresponding network substructures can be identified in current models of immune recognition. Our work draws a deep analogy between immune recognition and biochemical adaptation.

  18. Global relationships in fluctuation and response in adaptive evolution.

    PubMed

    Furusawa, Chikara; Kaneko, Kunihiko

    2015-08-01

    Cells change their internal state to adapt to environmental changes, and evolve in response to the new conditions. The phenotype changes first via adaptation in response to environmental changes, and then through mutational changes in the genomic sequence, followed by selection in evolution. Here, we analysed simulated adaptive evolution using a simple cell model consisting of thousands of intracellular components, and found that the changes in their concentrations by adaptation are proportional to those by evolution across all the components, where the proportion coefficient between the two agreed well with the change in the growth rate of a cell. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the phenotypic variance in concentrations of cellular components due to (non-genetic) noise and to genomic alternations is proportional across all components. This implies that the specific phenotypes that are highly evolvable were already given by non-genetic fluctuations. These global relationships in cellular states were also supported by phenomenological theory based on steady reproduction and transcriptome analysis of laboratory evolution in Escherichia coli. These findings demonstrate that a possible evolutionary change in phenotypic state is highly restricted. Our results provide a basis for the development of a quantitative theory of plasticity and robustness in phenotypic evolution.

  19. Global relationships in fluctuation and response in adaptive evolution

    PubMed Central

    Furusawa, Chikara; Kaneko, Kunihiko

    2015-01-01

    Cells change their internal state to adapt to environmental changes, and evolve in response to the new conditions. The phenotype changes first via adaptation in response to environmental changes, and then through mutational changes in the genomic sequence, followed by selection in evolution. Here, we analysed simulated adaptive evolution using a simple cell model consisting of thousands of intracellular components, and found that the changes in their concentrations by adaptation are proportional to those by evolution across all the components, where the proportion coefficient between the two agreed well with the change in the growth rate of a cell. Furthermore, we demonstrate that the phenotypic variance in concentrations of cellular components due to (non-genetic) noise and to genomic alternations is proportional across all components. This implies that the specific phenotypes that are highly evolvable were already given by non-genetic fluctuations. These global relationships in cellular states were also supported by phenomenological theory based on steady reproduction and transcriptome analysis of laboratory evolution in Escherichia coli. These findings demonstrate that a possible evolutionary change in phenotypic state is highly restricted. Our results provide a basis for the development of a quantitative theory of plasticity and robustness in phenotypic evolution. PMID:26202686

  20. Adaptive evolution in an avian reproductive protein: ZP3.

    PubMed

    Calkins, Jennifer D; El-Hinn, Diana; Swanson, Willie J

    2007-11-01

    Proteins involved in reproduction appear to be evolving adaptively across taxa. This rapid evolution is thought to be the result of forces involved in sexual selection. One of the most often suggested of these forces is sexual conflict involving sperm competition and polyspermy avoidance. Bird species offer a unique opportunity to test this hypothesis since the avian egg coat tolerates physiological polyspermy, or the penetration of multiple sperm during fertilization, without negative effects on later development. Despite this, and the extensive amount of data gathered on sexual selection in birds, there are limited studies on the patterns of evolution of avian reproductive proteins. Here we present an analysis of the pattern of evolution of Zona Pellucida 3 (ZP3), a protein present on the avian egg coat. We found that, across several galliform and a single anseriform species, ZP3 appears to be diverging by positive adaptive evolution. In an exploratory analysis of portions of the gene in Callipepla californica we also found evidence of a selective sweep at the putative sperm binding region of the protein. In sum, ZP3 in birds, like reproductive proteins in other species, appears to be adaptively evolving. This result suggests that polyspermy avoidance is not sufficient to explain positive Darwinian selection in reproductive proteins across taxonomic groups. Clearly, the inclusion of bird species in the study of reproductive proteins across taxa promises to add greatly to the discussion of the factors driving the widespread phenomenon of adaptive evolution in reproductive proteins. PMID:17909693

  1. Epistatically Interacting Substitutions Are Enriched during Adaptive Protein Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Gong, Lizhi Ian; Bloom, Jesse D.

    2014-01-01

    Most experimental studies of epistasis in evolution have focused on adaptive changes—but adaptation accounts for only a portion of total evolutionary change. Are the patterns of epistasis during adaptation representative of evolution more broadly? We address this question by examining a pair of protein homologs, of which only one is subject to a well-defined pressure for adaptive change. Specifically, we compare the nucleoproteins from human and swine influenza. Human influenza is under continual selection to evade recognition by acquired immune memory, while swine influenza experiences less such selection due to the fact that pigs are less likely to be infected with influenza repeatedly in a lifetime. Mutations in some types of immune epitopes are therefore much more strongly adaptive to human than swine influenza—here we focus on epitopes targeted by human cytotoxic T lymphocytes. The nucleoproteins of human and swine influenza possess nearly identical numbers of such epitopes. However, mutations in these epitopes are fixed significantly more frequently in human than in swine influenza, presumably because these epitope mutations are adaptive only to human influenza. Experimentally, we find that epistatically constrained mutations are fixed only in the adaptively evolving human influenza lineage, where they occur at sites that are enriched in epitopes. Overall, our results demonstrate that epistatically interacting substitutions are enriched during adaptation, suggesting that the prevalence of epistasis is dependent on the underlying evolutionary forces at play. PMID:24811236

  2. Adaptive evolution toward larger size in mammals

    PubMed Central

    Baker, Joanna; Meade, Andrew; Pagel, Mark; Venditti, Chris

    2015-01-01

    The notion that large body size confers some intrinsic advantage to biological species has been debated for centuries. Using a phylogenetic statistical approach that allows the rate of body size evolution to vary across a phylogeny, we find a long-term directional bias toward increasing size in the mammals. This pattern holds separately in 10 of 11 orders for which sufficient data are available and arises from a tendency for accelerated rates of evolution to produce increases, but not decreases, in size. On a branch-by-branch basis, increases in body size have been more than twice as likely as decreases, yielding what amounts to millions and millions of years of rapid and repeated increases in size away from the small ancestral mammal. These results are the first evidence, to our knowledge, from extant species that are compatible with Cope’s rule: the pattern of body size increase through time observed in the mammalian fossil record. We show that this pattern is unlikely to be explained by several nonadaptive mechanisms for increasing size and most likely represents repeated responses to new selective circumstances. By demonstrating that it is possible to uncover ancient evolutionary trends from a combination of a phylogeny and appropriate statistical models, we illustrate how data from extant species can complement paleontological accounts of evolutionary history, opening up new avenues of investigation for both. PMID:25848031

  3. Molecular evolution of hydrogen peroxide degrading enzymes.

    PubMed

    Zámocký, Marcel; Gasselhuber, Bernhard; Furtmüller, Paul G; Obinger, Christian

    2012-09-15

    For efficient removal of intra- and/or extracellular hydrogen peroxide by dismutation to harmless dioxygen and water (2H(2)O(2) → O(2) + 2H(2)O), nature designed three metalloenzyme families that differ in oligomeric organization, monomer architecture as well as active site geometry and catalytic residues. Here we report on the updated reconstruction of the molecular phylogeny of these three gene families. Ubiquitous typical (monofunctional) heme catalases are found in all domains of life showing a high structural conservation. Their evolution was directed from large subunit towards small subunit proteins and further to fused proteins where the catalase fold was retained but lost its original functionality. Bifunctional catalase-peroxidases were at the origin of one of the two main heme peroxidase superfamilies (i.e. peroxidase-catalase superfamily) and constitute a protein family predominantly present among eubacteria and archaea, but two evolutionary branches are also found in the eukaryotic world. Non-heme manganese catalases are a relatively small protein family with very old roots only present among bacteria and archaea. Phylogenetic analyses of the three protein families reveal features typical (i) for the evolution of whole genomes as well as (ii) for specific evolutionary events including horizontal gene transfer, paralog formation and gene fusion. As catalases have reached a striking diversity among prokaryotic and eukaryotic pathogens, understanding their phylogenetic and molecular relationship and function will contribute to drug design for prevention of diseases of humans, animals and plants. PMID:22330759

  4. Integrating influenza antigenic dynamics with molecular evolution

    PubMed Central

    Bedford, Trevor; Suchard, Marc A; Lemey, Philippe; Dudas, Gytis; Gregory, Victoria; Hay, Alan J; McCauley, John W; Russell, Colin A; Smith, Derek J; Rambaut, Andrew

    2014-01-01

    Influenza viruses undergo continual antigenic evolution allowing mutant viruses to evade host immunity acquired to previous virus strains. Antigenic phenotype is often assessed through pairwise measurement of cross-reactivity between influenza strains using the hemagglutination inhibition (HI) assay. Here, we extend previous approaches to antigenic cartography, and simultaneously characterize antigenic and genetic evolution by modeling the diffusion of antigenic phenotype over a shared virus phylogeny. Using HI data from influenza lineages A/H3N2, A/H1N1, B/Victoria and B/Yamagata, we determine patterns of antigenic drift across viral lineages, showing that A/H3N2 evolves faster and in a more punctuated fashion than other influenza lineages. We also show that year-to-year antigenic drift appears to drive incidence patterns within each influenza lineage. This work makes possible substantial future advances in investigating the dynamics of influenza and other antigenically-variable pathogens by providing a model that intimately combines molecular and antigenic evolution. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.01914.001 PMID:24497547

  5. Link-based formalism for time evolution of adaptive networks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhou, Jie; Xiao, Gaoxi; Chen, Guanrong

    2013-09-01

    Network topology and nodal dynamics are two fundamental stones of adaptive networks. Detailed and accurate knowledge of these two ingredients is crucial for understanding the evolution and mechanism of adaptive networks. In this paper, by adopting the framework of the adaptive SIS model proposed by Gross [Phys. Rev. Lett.PRLTAO0031-900710.1103/PhysRevLett.96.208701 96, 208701 (2006)] and carefully utilizing the information of degree correlation of the network, we propose a link-based formalism for describing the system dynamics with high accuracy and subtle details. Several specific degree correlation measures are introduced to reveal the coevolution of network topology and system dynamics.

  6. Rhodopsin Molecular Evolution in Mammals Inhabiting Low Light Environments

    PubMed Central

    Zhao, Huabin; Ru, Binghua; Teeling, Emma C.; Faulkes, Christopher G.; Zhang, Shuyi; Rossiter, Stephen J.

    2009-01-01

    The ecological radiation of mammals to inhabit a variety of light environments is largely attributed to adaptive changes in their visual systems. Visual capabilities are conferred by anatomical features of the eyes as well as the combination and properties of their constituent light sensitive pigments. To test whether evolutionary switches to different niches characterized by dim-light conditions coincided with molecular adaptation of the rod pigment rhodopsin, we sequenced the rhodopsin gene in twenty-two mammals including several bats and subterranean mole-rats. We compared these to thirty-seven published mammal rhodopsin sequences, from species with divergent visual ecologies, including nocturnal, diurnal and aquatic groups. All taxa possessed an intact functional rhodopsin; however, phylogenetic tree reconstruction recovered a gene tree in which rodents were not monophyletic, and also in which echolocating bats formed a monophyletic group. These conflicts with the species tree appear to stem from accelerated evolution in these groups, both of which inhabit low light environments. Selection tests confirmed divergent selection pressures in the clades of subterranean rodents and bats, as well as in marine mammals that live in turbid conditions. We also found evidence of divergent selection pressures among groups of bats with different sensory modalities based on vision and echolocation. Sliding window analyses suggest most changes occur in transmembrane domains, particularly obvious within the pinnipeds; however, we found no obvious pattern between photopic niche and predicted spectral sensitivity based on known critical amino acids. This study indicates that the independent evolution of rhodopsin vision in ecologically specialised groups of mammals has involved molecular evolution at the sequence level, though such changes might not mediate spectral sensitivity directly. PMID:20016835

  7. Camelid genomes reveal evolution and adaptation to desert environments.

    PubMed

    Wu, Huiguang; Guang, Xuanmin; Al-Fageeh, Mohamed B; Cao, Junwei; Pan, Shengkai; Zhou, Huanmin; Zhang, Li; Abutarboush, Mohammed H; Xing, Yanping; Xie, Zhiyuan; Alshanqeeti, Ali S; Zhang, Yanru; Yao, Qiulin; Al-Shomrani, Badr M; Zhang, Dong; Li, Jiang; Manee, Manee M; Yang, Zili; Yang, Linfeng; Liu, Yiyi; Zhang, Jilin; Altammami, Musaad A; Wang, Shenyuan; Yu, Lili; Zhang, Wenbin; Liu, Sanyang; Ba, La; Liu, Chunxia; Yang, Xukui; Meng, Fanhua; Wang, Shaowei; Li, Lu; Li, Erli; Li, Xueqiong; Wu, Kaifeng; Zhang, Shu; Wang, Junyi; Yin, Ye; Yang, Huanming; Al-Swailem, Abdulaziz M; Wang, Jun

    2014-10-21

    Bactrian camel (Camelus bactrianus), dromedary (Camelus dromedarius) and alpaca (Vicugna pacos) are economically important livestock. Although the Bactrian camel and dromedary are large, typically arid-desert-adapted mammals, alpacas are adapted to plateaus. Here we present high-quality genome sequences of these three species. Our analysis reveals the demographic history of these species since the Tortonian Stage of the Miocene and uncovers a striking correlation between large fluctuations in population size and geological time boundaries. Comparative genomic analysis reveals complex features related to desert adaptations, including fat and water metabolism, stress responses to heat, aridity, intense ultraviolet radiation and choking dust. Transcriptomic analysis of Bactrian camels further reveals unique osmoregulation, osmoprotection and compensatory mechanisms for water reservation underpinned by high blood glucose levels. We hypothesize that these physiological mechanisms represent kidney evolutionary adaptations to the desert environment. This study advances our understanding of camelid evolution and the adaptation of camels to arid-desert environments.

  8. The chemical evolution of molecular clouds

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Iglesias, E.

    1977-01-01

    The nonequilibrium chemistry of dense molecular clouds (10,000 to 1 million hydrogen molecules per cu cm) is studied in the framework of a model that includes the latest published chemical data and most of the recent theoretical advances. In this model the only important external source of ionization is assumed to be high-energy cosmic-ray bombardment; standard charge-transfer reactions are taken into account as well as reactions that transfer charge from molecular ions to trace-metal atoms. Schemes are proposed for the synthesis of such species as NCO, HNCO, and CN. The role played by adsorption and condensation of molecules on the surface of dust grains is investigated, and effects on the chemical evolution of a dense molecular cloud are considered which result from varying the total density or the elemental abundances and from assuming negligible or severe condensation of gaseous species on dust grains. It is shown that the chemical-equilibrium time scale is given approximately by the depletion times of oxygen and nitrogen when the condensation efficiency is negligible; that this time scale is probably in the range from 1 to 4 million years, depending on the elemental composition and initial conditions in the cloud; and that this time scale is insensitive to variations in the total density.

  9. Evolution, phylogeny, and molecular epidemiology of Chlamydia.

    PubMed

    Nunes, Alexandra; Gomes, João P

    2014-04-01

    The Chlamydiaceae are a family of obligate intracellular bacteria characterized by a unique biphasic developmental cycle. It encompasses the single genus Chlamydia, which involves nine species that affect a wide range of vertebral hosts, causing infections with serious impact on human health (mainly due to Chlamydia trachomatis infections) and on farming and veterinary industries. It is believed that Chlamydiales originated ∼700mya, whereas C. trachomatis likely split from the other Chlamydiaceae during the last 6mya. This corresponds to the emergence of modern human lineages, with the first descriptions of chlamydial infections as ancient as four millennia. Chlamydiaceae have undergone a massive genome reduction, on behalf of the deletional bias "use it or lose it", stabilizing at 1-1.2Mb and keeping a striking genome synteny. Their phylogeny reveals species segregation according to biological properties, with huge differences in terms of host range, tissue tropism, and disease outcomes. Genome differences rely on the occurrence of mutations in the >700 orthologous genes, as well as on events of recombination, gene loss, inversion, and paralogous expansion, affecting both a hypervariable region named the plasticity zone, and genes essentially encoding polymorphic and transmembrane head membrane proteins, type III secretion effectors and some metabolic pathways. Procedures for molecular typing are still not consensual but have allowed the knowledge of molecular epidemiology patterns for some species as well as the identification of outbreaks and emergence of successful clones for C. trachomatis. This manuscript intends to provide a comprehensive review on the evolution, phylogeny, and molecular epidemiology of Chlamydia.

  10. The rule of declining adaptability in microbial evolution experiments

    PubMed Central

    Couce, Alejandro; Tenaillon, Olivier A.

    2015-01-01

    One of the most recurrent observations after two decades of microbial evolution experiments regards the dynamics of fitness change. In a given environment, low-fitness genotypes are recurrently observed to adapt faster than their more fit counterparts. Since adaptation is the main macroscopic outcome of Darwinian evolution, studying its patterns of change could potentially provide insight into key issues of evolutionary theory, from fixation dynamics to the genetic architecture of organisms. Here, we re-analyze several published datasets from experimental evolution with microbes and show that, despite large differences in the origin of the data, a pattern of inverse dependence of adaptability with fitness clearly emerges. In quantitative terms, it is remarkable to observe little if any degree of idiosyncrasy across systems as diverse as virus, bacteria and yeast. The universality of this phenomenon suggests that its emergence might be understood from general principles, giving rise to the exciting prospect that evolution might be statistically predictable at the macroscopic level. We discuss these possibilities in the light of the various theories of adaptation that have been proposed and delineate future directions of research. PMID:25815007

  11. Molecular evolution of cryptochromes in fishes.

    PubMed

    Mei, Qiming; Sadovy, Yvonne; Dvornyk, Volodymyr

    2015-12-10

    Circadian rhythmicity is an endogenous biological cycle of about 24h, which exists in cyanobacteria and fungi, plants and animals. Circadian rhythms improve the adaptability of organisms in both constant and changing environments. The cryptochrome (CRY) is a key element of the circadian system in various animal groups including fishes. We studied evolution of cryptochromes in the phylogenetically and ecologically diverse fish taxa. The phylogenetic tree of fish Cry features two major clades: Cry1 and Cry2. Teleosts possess extra copies of Cry1 due to the genome duplication, which resulted in 3 main paralogous subfamilies (1A, 1B and 1C). Cry1 experienced further diversification through additional duplications in some taxa. 1A of Cry1 is more conserved than the other paralogs (dN=0.010 ± 0.003, π=0.119 ± 0.058). The analysis of selection indicated that, while the Cry homologs in fish evolved under the different levels of selection pressure, strong purifying selection (average ω=0.017) dominated in their evolution.

  12. OASes and STING: adaptive evolution in concert.

    PubMed

    Mozzi, Alessandra; Pontremoli, Chiara; Forni, Diego; Clerici, Mario; Pozzoli, Uberto; Bresolin, Nereo; Cagliani, Rachele; Sironi, Manuela

    2015-03-09

    OAS (2'-5'-oligoadenylate synthases) proteins and cyclic GMP-AMP synthase (cGAS, gene symbol: MB21D1) patrol the cytoplasm for the presence of foreign nucleic acids. Upon binding to double-stranded RNA or double-stranded DNA, OAS proteins and cGAS produce nucleotide second messengers to activate RNase L and STING (stimulator of interferon genes, gene symbol: TMEM173), respectively; this leads to the initiation of antiviral responses. We analyzed the evolutionary history of the MB21D1-TMEM173 and OAS-RNASEL axes in primates and bats and found evidence of widespread positive selection in both orders. In TMEM173, residue 230, a major determinant of response to natural ligands and to mimetic drugs (e.g., DMXAA), was positively selected in Primates and Chiroptera. In both orders, selection also targeted an α-helix/loop element in RNase L that modulates the enzyme preference for single-stranded RNA versus stem loops. Analysis of positively selected sites in OAS1, OAS2, and MB21D1 revealed parallel evolution, with the corresponding residues being selected in different genes. As this cannot result from gene conversion, these data suggest that selective pressure acting on OAS and MB21D1 genes is related to nucleic acid recognition and to the specific mechanism of enzyme activation, which requires a conformational change. Finally, a population genetics-phylogenetics analysis in humans, chimpanzees, and gorillas detected several positively selected sites in most genes. Data herein shed light into species-specific differences in infection susceptibility and in response to synthetic compounds, with relevance for the design of synthetic compounds as vaccine adjuvants.

  13. OASes and STING: adaptive evolution in concert.

    PubMed

    Mozzi, Alessandra; Pontremoli, Chiara; Forni, Diego; Clerici, Mario; Pozzoli, Uberto; Bresolin, Nereo; Cagliani, Rachele; Sironi, Manuela

    2015-04-01

    OAS (2'-5'-oligoadenylate synthases) proteins and cyclic GMP-AMP synthase (cGAS, gene symbol: MB21D1) patrol the cytoplasm for the presence of foreign nucleic acids. Upon binding to double-stranded RNA or double-stranded DNA, OAS proteins and cGAS produce nucleotide second messengers to activate RNase L and STING (stimulator of interferon genes, gene symbol: TMEM173), respectively; this leads to the initiation of antiviral responses. We analyzed the evolutionary history of the MB21D1-TMEM173 and OAS-RNASEL axes in primates and bats and found evidence of widespread positive selection in both orders. In TMEM173, residue 230, a major determinant of response to natural ligands and to mimetic drugs (e.g., DMXAA), was positively selected in Primates and Chiroptera. In both orders, selection also targeted an α-helix/loop element in RNase L that modulates the enzyme preference for single-stranded RNA versus stem loops. Analysis of positively selected sites in OAS1, OAS2, and MB21D1 revealed parallel evolution, with the corresponding residues being selected in different genes. As this cannot result from gene conversion, these data suggest that selective pressure acting on OAS and MB21D1 genes is related to nucleic acid recognition and to the specific mechanism of enzyme activation, which requires a conformational change. Finally, a population genetics-phylogenetics analysis in humans, chimpanzees, and gorillas detected several positively selected sites in most genes. Data herein shed light into species-specific differences in infection susceptibility and in response to synthetic compounds, with relevance for the design of synthetic compounds as vaccine adjuvants. PMID:25752600

  14. Molecular Evolution of the Capsid Gene in Norovirus Genogroup I.

    PubMed

    Kobayashi, Miho; Yoshizumi, Shima; Kogawa, Sayaka; Takahashi, Tomoko; Ueki, Yo; Shinohara, Michiyo; Mizukoshi, Fuminori; Tsukagoshi, Hiroyuki; Sasaki, Yoshiko; Suzuki, Rieko; Shimizu, Hideaki; Iwakiri, Akira; Okabe, Nobuhiko; Shirabe, Komei; Shinomiya, Hiroto; Kozawa, Kunihisa; Kusunoki, Hideki; Ryo, Akihide; Kuroda, Makoto; Katayama, Kazuhiko; Kimura, Hirokazu

    2015-01-01

    We studied the molecular evolution of the capsid gene in all genotypes (genotypes 1-9) of human norovirus (NoV) genogroup I. The evolutionary time scale and rate were estimated by the Bayesian Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) method. We also performed selective pressure analysis and B-cell linear epitope prediction in the deduced NoV GI capsid protein. Furthermore, we analysed the effective population size of the virus using Bayesian skyline plot (BSP) analysis. A phylogenetic tree by MCMC showed that NoV GI diverged from the common ancestor of NoV GII, GIII, and GIV approximately 2,800 years ago with rapid evolution (about 10(-3) substitutions/site/year). Some positive selection sites and over 400 negative selection sites were estimated in the deduced capsid protein. Many epitopes were estimated in the deduced virus capsid proteins. An epitope of GI.1 may be associated with histo-blood group antigen binding sites (Ser377, Pro378, and Ser380). Moreover, BSP suggested that the adaptation of NoV GI strains to humans was affected by natural selection. The results suggested that NoV GI strains evolved rapidly and date back to many years ago. Additionally, the virus may have undergone locally affected natural selection in the host resulting in its adaptation to humans. PMID:26338545

  15. Thermal force approach to molecular evolution.

    PubMed

    Braun, Dieter; Libchaber, Albert

    2004-06-01

    Recent experiments are discussed where temperature gradients across mesoscopic pores are shown to provide essential mechanisms for autonomous molecular evolution. On the one hand, laminar thermal convection can drive DNA replication as the molecules are continuously cycled between hot and cold regions of a chamber. On the other hand, thermophoresis can accumulate charged biopolymers in similar convection settings. The experiments show that temperature differences analogous to those across porous rocks present a robust nonequilibrium boundary condition to feed the replication and accumulation of evolving molecules. It is speculated that similar nonequilibrium conditions near porous submarine hydrothermal mounds could have triggered the origin of life. In such a scenario, the encapsulation of cells with membranes would be a later development. It is expected that detailed studies of mesoscopic boundary conditions under nonequilibrium conditions will reveal new connecting pieces in the fascinating puzzle of the origins of life. PMID:16204812

  16. Fisheries-induced neutral and adaptive evolution in exploited fish populations and consequences for their adaptive potential

    PubMed Central

    Marty, Lise; Dieckmann, Ulf; Ernande, Bruno

    2015-01-01

    Fishing may induce neutral and adaptive evolution affecting life-history traits, and molecular evidence has shown that neutral genetic diversity has declined in some exploited populations. Here, we theoretically study the interplay between neutral and adaptive evolution caused by fishing. An individual-based eco-genetic model is devised that includes neutral and functional loci in a realistic ecological setting. In line with theoretical expectations, we find that fishing induces evolution towards slow growth, early maturation at small size and higher reproductive investment. We show, first, that the choice of genetic model (based on either quantitative genetics or gametic inheritance) influences the evolutionary recovery of traits after fishing ceases. Second, we analyse the influence of three factors possibly involved in the lack of evolutionary recovery: the strength of selection, the effect of genetic drift and the loss of adaptive potential. We find that evolutionary recovery is hampered by an association of weak selection differentials with reduced additive genetic variances. Third, the contribution of fisheries-induced selection to the erosion of functional genetic diversity clearly dominates that of genetic drift only for the traits related to maturation. Together, our results highlight the importance of taking into account population genetic variability in predictions of eco-evolutionary dynamics. PMID:25667602

  17. Molecular phenotyping of maternally mediated parallel adaptive divergence within Rana arvalis and Rana temporaria.

    PubMed

    Shu, Longfei; Laurila, Anssi; Suter, Marc J-F; Räsänen, Katja

    2016-09-01

    When similar selection acts on the same traits in multiple species or populations, parallel evolution can result in similar phenotypic changes, yet the underlying molecular architecture of parallel phenotypic divergence can be variable. Maternal effects can influence evolution at ecological timescales and facilitate local adaptation, but their contribution to parallel adaptive divergence is unclear. In this study, we (i) tested for variation in embryonic acid tolerance in a common garden experiment and (ii) used molecular phenotyping of egg coats to investigate the molecular basis of maternally mediated parallel adaptive divergence in two amphibian species (Rana arvalis and Rana temporaria). Our results on three R. arvalis and two R. temporaria populations show that adaptive divergence in embryonic acid tolerance is mediated via maternally derived egg coats in both species. We find extensive polymorphism in egg jelly coat glycoproteins within both species and that acid-tolerant clutches have more negatively charged egg jelly - indicating that the glycosylation status of the jelly coat proteins is under divergent selection in acidified environments, likely due to its impact on jelly water balance. Overall, these data provide evidence for parallel mechanisms of adaptive divergence in two species. Our study highlights the importance of studying intraspecific molecular variation in egg coats and, specifically, their glycoproteins, to increase understanding of underlying forces maintaining variation in jelly coats. PMID:27482650

  18. Molecular epidemiology and evolution of fish Novirhabdoviruses

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Kurath, Gael

    2014-01-01

    The genus Novirhabdoviridae contains several of the important rhabdoviruses that infect fish hosts. There are four established virus species: Infectious hematopoietic necrosis virus (IHNV), Viral hemorrhagic septicemia virus (VHSV), Hirame rhabdovirus(HIRRV), and Snakehead rhabdovirus (SHRV). Viruses of these species vary in host and geographic range, and they have all been studied at the molecular and genomic level. As globally significant pathogens of cultured fish, IHNV and VHSV have been particularly well studied in terms of molecular epidemiology and evolution. Phylogenic analyses of hundreds of field isolates have defined five major genogroups of IHNV and four major genotypes of VHSV worldwide. These phylogenies are informed by the known histories of IHNV and VHSV, each involving a series of viral emergence events that are sometimes associated with host switches, most often into cultured rainbow trout. In general, IHNV has relatively low genetic diversity and a narrow host range, and has been spread from its endemic source in North American to Europe and Asia due to aquaculture activities. In contrast, VHSV has broad host range and high genetic diversity, and the source of emergence events is virus in widespread marine fish reservoirs in the northern Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. Common mechanisms of emergence and host switch events include use of raw feed, proximity to wild fish reservoirs of virus, and geographic translocations of virus or naive fish hosts associated with aquaculture.

  19. Adaptation, niche conservatism, and convergence: comparative studies of leaf evolution in the California chaparral.

    PubMed

    Ackerly, David D

    2004-05-01

    Small leaves and low specific leaf area (SLA) have long been viewed as adaptations to Mediterranean-type climates in many species of evergreen woody plants. However, paleobotanical and floristic evidence suggests that in many cases these traits originated prior to the advent of the summer-drought climate regime. In this study, molecular phylogenies and ancestral state reconstructions were used to test the hypothesis of adaptive leaf evolution in 12 lineages of evergreen shrubs in the California chaparral. Across all lineages there was a small but significant shift toward lower SLA, but there were no trends in leaf size evolution. For individual lineages, adaptive changes were detected in only three cases for SLA and in one case for leaf size. Three of these cases of evolutionary change were observed in taxa derived from cool temperate ancestors (e.g., Heteromeles). In contrast, most lineages originating from subtropical ancestors exhibited relative stasis in leaf trait evolution (e.g., Ceanothus). The absence of change suggests that ancestors of chaparral taxa had already acquired appropriate traits that contributed to their success under Mediterranean-type climates. These results illustrate how biogeographic history may influence patterns of trait evolution and adaptation and highlight the contribution of ecological sorting processes to the assembly and functional ecology of regional biotas.

  20. Procedure for Adaptive Laboratory Evolution of Microorganisms Using a Chemostat.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Haeyoung; Lee, Sang J; Kim, Pil

    2016-01-01

    Natural evolution involves genetic diversity such as environmental change and a selection between small populations. Adaptive laboratory evolution (ALE) refers to the experimental situation in which evolution is observed using living organisms under controlled conditions and stressors; organisms are thereby artificially forced to make evolutionary changes. Microorganisms are subject to a variety of stressors in the environment and are capable of regulating certain stress-inducible proteins to increase their chances of survival. Naturally occurring spontaneous mutations bring about changes in a microorganism's genome that affect its chances of survival. Long-term exposure to chemostat culture provokes an accumulation of spontaneous mutations and renders the most adaptable strain dominant. Compared to the colony transfer and serial transfer methods, chemostat culture entails the highest number of cell divisions and, therefore, the highest number of diverse populations. Although chemostat culture for ALE requires more complicated culture devices, it is less labor intensive once the operation begins. Comparative genomic and transcriptome analyses of the adapted strain provide evolutionary clues as to how the stressors contribute to mutations that overcome the stress. The goal of the current paper is to bring about accelerated evolution of microorganisms under controlled laboratory conditions.

  1. Procedure for Adaptive Laboratory Evolution of Microorganisms Using a Chemostat.

    PubMed

    Jeong, Haeyoung; Lee, Sang J; Kim, Pil

    2016-01-01

    Natural evolution involves genetic diversity such as environmental change and a selection between small populations. Adaptive laboratory evolution (ALE) refers to the experimental situation in which evolution is observed using living organisms under controlled conditions and stressors; organisms are thereby artificially forced to make evolutionary changes. Microorganisms are subject to a variety of stressors in the environment and are capable of regulating certain stress-inducible proteins to increase their chances of survival. Naturally occurring spontaneous mutations bring about changes in a microorganism's genome that affect its chances of survival. Long-term exposure to chemostat culture provokes an accumulation of spontaneous mutations and renders the most adaptable strain dominant. Compared to the colony transfer and serial transfer methods, chemostat culture entails the highest number of cell divisions and, therefore, the highest number of diverse populations. Although chemostat culture for ALE requires more complicated culture devices, it is less labor intensive once the operation begins. Comparative genomic and transcriptome analyses of the adapted strain provide evolutionary clues as to how the stressors contribute to mutations that overcome the stress. The goal of the current paper is to bring about accelerated evolution of microorganisms under controlled laboratory conditions. PMID:27684991

  2. Adaptive Evolution of Conserved Noncoding Elements in Mammals

    PubMed Central

    Kim, Su Yeon; Pritchard, Jonathan K

    2007-01-01

    Conserved noncoding elements (CNCs) are an abundant feature of vertebrate genomes. Some CNCs have been shown to act as cis-regulatory modules, but the function of most CNCs remains unclear. To study the evolution of CNCs, we have developed a statistical method called the “shared rates test” to identify CNCs that show significant variation in substitution rates across branches of a phylogenetic tree. We report an application of this method to alignments of 98,910 CNCs from the human, chimpanzee, dog, mouse, and rat genomes. We find that ∼68% of CNCs evolve according to a null model where, for each CNC, a single parameter models the level of constraint acting throughout the phylogeny linking these five species. The remaining ∼32% of CNCs show departures from the basic model including speed-ups and slow-downs on particular branches and occasionally multiple rate changes on different branches. We find that a subset of the significant CNCs have evolved significantly faster than the local neutral rate on a particular branch, providing strong evidence for adaptive evolution in these CNCs. The distribution of these signals on the phylogeny suggests that adaptive evolution of CNCs occurs in occasional short bursts of evolution. Our analyses suggest a large set of promising targets for future functional studies of adaptation. PMID:17845075

  3. Development vs. behavior: a role for neural adaptation in evolution?

    PubMed

    Ghysen, Alain; Dambly-Chaudière, Christine

    2016-01-01

    We examine the evolution of sensory organ patterning in the lateral line system of fish. Based on recent studies of how this system develops in zebrafish, and on comparative analyses between zebrafish and tuna, we argue that the evolution of lateral line patterns is mostly determined by variations in the underlying developmental processes, independent of any selective pressure. Yet the development of major developmental innovations is so directly linked to their exploitation that it is hard not to think of them as selected for, i.e., adaptive. We propose that adaptation resides mostly in how the nervous system adjusts to new morphologies to make them functional, i.e., that species are neurally adapted to whatever morphology is provided to them by their own developmental program. We show that recent data on behavioral differences between cave forms (blind) and surface forms (eyed) of the mexican fish Astyanax fasciatus support this view, and we propose that this species might provide a unique opportunity to assess the nature of adaptation and of selection in animal evolution. PMID:27389980

  4. Nutrient-dependent/pheromone-controlled adaptive evolution: a model

    PubMed Central

    Kohl, James Vaughn

    2013-01-01

    Background The prenatal migration of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) neurosecretory neurons allows nutrients and human pheromones to alter GnRH pulsatility, which modulates the concurrent maturation of the neuroendocrine, reproductive, and central nervous systems, thus influencing the development of ingestive behavior, reproductive sexual behavior, and other behaviors. Methods This model details how chemical ecology drives adaptive evolution via: (1) ecological niche construction, (2) social niche construction, (3) neurogenic niche construction, and (4) socio-cognitive niche construction. This model exemplifies the epigenetic effects of olfactory/pheromonal conditioning, which alters genetically predisposed, nutrient-dependent, hormone-driven mammalian behavior and choices for pheromones that control reproduction via their effects on luteinizing hormone (LH) and systems biology. Results Nutrients are metabolized to pheromones that condition behavior in the same way that food odors condition behavior associated with food preferences. The epigenetic effects of olfactory/pheromonal input calibrate and standardize molecular mechanisms for genetically predisposed receptor-mediated changes in intracellular signaling and stochastic gene expression in GnRH neurosecretory neurons of brain tissue. For example, glucose and pheromones alter the hypothalamic secretion of GnRH and LH. A form of GnRH associated with sexual orientation in yeasts links control of the feedback loops and developmental processes required for nutrient acquisition, movement, reproduction, and the diversification of species from microbes to man. Conclusion An environmental drive evolved from that of nutrient ingestion in unicellular organisms to that of pheromone-controlled socialization in insects. In mammals, food odors and pheromones cause changes in hormones such as LH, which has developmental affects on pheromone-controlled sexual behavior in nutrient-dependent reproductively fit individuals

  5. Harnessing recombination to speed adaptive evolution in Escherichia coli.

    PubMed

    Winkler, James; Kao, Katy C

    2012-09-01

    Evolutionary engineering typically involves asexual propagation of a strain to improve a desired phenotype. However, asexual populations suffer from extensive clonal interference, a phenomenon where distinct lineages of beneficial clones compete and are often lost from the population given sufficient time. Improved adaptive mutants can likely be generated by genetic exchange between lineages, thereby reducing clonal interference. We present a system that allows continuous in situ recombination by using an Esherichia coli F-based conjugation system lacking surface exclusion. Evolution experiments revealed that Hfr-mediated recombination significantly speeds adaptation in certain circumstances. These results show that our system is stable, effective, and suitable for use in evolutionary engineering applications.

  6. Influenza Virus Evolution, Host Adaptation and Pandemic Formation

    PubMed Central

    Taubenberger, Jeffery K.; Kash, John C.

    2010-01-01

    Newly emerging or `re-emerging' viral diseases continue to pose significant global public health threats. Prototypic are influenza viruses that are major causes of human respiratory infections and mortality. Influenza viruses can cause zoonotic infections and adapt to humans leading to sustained transmission and emergence of novel viruses. Mechanisms by which viruses evolve in one host, cause zoonotic infection and adapt to a new host species remain unelucidated. Here we review evolution of influenza A viruses in their reservoir hosts and discuss genetic changes associated with introduction of novel viruses into humans leading to pandemics and the establishment of seasonal viruses. PMID:20542248

  7. Constraint to adaptive evolution in response to global warming.

    PubMed

    Etterson, J R; Shaw, R G

    2001-10-01

    We characterized the genetic architecture of three populations of a native North American prairie plant in field conditions that simulate the warmer and more arid climates predicted by global climate models. Despite genetic variance for traits under selection, among-trait genetic correlations that are antagonistic to the direction of selection limit adaptive evolution within these populations. Predicted rates of evolutionary response are much slower than the predicted rate of climate change.

  8. Adaptive evolution of plastron shape in emydine turtles.

    PubMed

    Angielczyk, Kenneth D; Feldman, Chris R; Miller, Gretchen R

    2011-02-01

    Morphology reflects ecological pressures, phylogeny, and genetic and biophysical constraints. Disentangling their influence is fundamental to understanding selection and trait evolution. Here, we assess the contributions of function, phylogeny, and habitat to patterns of plastron (ventral shell) shape variation in emydine turtles. We quantify shape variation using geometric morphometrics, and determine the influence of several variables on shape using path analysis. Factors influencing plastron shape variation are similar between emydine turtles and the more inclusive Testudinoidea. We evaluate the fit of various evolutionary models to the shape data to investigate the selective landscape responsible for the observed morphological patterns. The presence of a hinge on the plastron accounts for most morphological variance, but phylogeny and habitat also correlate with shape. The distribution of shape variance across emydine phylogeny is most consistent with an evolutionary model containing two adaptive zones--one for turtles with kinetic plastra, and one for turtles with rigid plastra. Models with more complex adaptive landscapes often fit the data only as well as the null model (purely stochastic evolution). The adaptive landscape of plastron shape in Emydinae may be relatively simple because plastral kinesis imposes overriding mechanical constraints on the evolution of form.

  9. Omnivory in lacertid lizards: adaptive evolution or constraint?

    PubMed

    Herrel, A; Vanhooydonck, B; Van Damme, R

    2004-09-01

    Feeding specializations such as herbivory are an often cited example of convergent and adaptive evolution. However, some groups such as lizards appear constrained in the evolution of morphological specializations associated with specialized diets. Here we examine whether the inclusion of plant matter into the diet of omnivorous lacertid lizards has resulted in morphological specializations and whether these specializations reflect biomechanical compromises as expected if omnivores are constrained by functional trade-offs. We examined external head shape, skull shape, tooth structure, intestinal tract length and bite performance as previous studies have suggested correlations between the inclusion of plants into the diet and these traits. Our data show that omnivorous lacertid lizards possess modifications of these traits that allow them to successfully exploit plant material as a food source. Conversely, few indications of a compromise phenotype could be detected, suggesting that the evolution towards herbivory is only mildly constrained by functional trade-offs.

  10. Molecular epidemiology and evolution of porcine parvoviruses.

    PubMed

    Streck, André Felipe; Canal, Cláudio Wageck; Truyen, Uwe

    2015-12-01

    Porcine parvovirus (PPV), recently named Ungulate protoparvovirus 1, is considered to be one of the most important causes of reproductive failure in swine. Fetal death, mummification, stillbirths and delayed return to estrus are predominant clinical signs commonly associated with PPV infection in a herd. It has recently been shown that certain parvoviruses exhibit a nucleotide substitution rate close to that commonly determined for RNA viruses. However, the PPV vaccines broadly used in the last 30 years have most likely reduced the genetic diversity of the virus and led to the predominance of strains with a capsid profile distinct from that of the original vaccine-based strains. Furthermore, a number of novel porcine parvovirus species with yet-unknown veterinary relevance and characteristics have been described during the last decade. In this review, an overview of PPV molecular evolution is presented, highlighting characteristics of the various genetic elements, their evolutionary rate and the discovery of new capsid profiles driven by the currently used vaccines.

  11. Adaptive evolution of cytochrome c oxidase: Infrastructure for a carnivorous plant radiation.

    PubMed

    Jobson, Richard W; Nielsen, Rasmus; Laakkonen, Liisa; Wikström, Mårten; Albert, Victor A

    2004-12-28

    Much recent attention in the study of adaptation of organismal form has centered on developmental regulation. As such, the highly conserved respiratory machinery of eukaryotic cells might seem an unlikely target for selection supporting novel morphologies. We demonstrate that a dramatic molecular evolutionary rate increase in subunit I of cytochrome c oxidase (COX) from an active-trapping lineage of carnivorous plants is caused by positive Darwinian selection. Bladderworts (Utricularia) trap plankton when water-immersed, negatively pressured suction bladders are triggered. The resetting of traps involves active ion transport, requiring considerable energy expenditure. As judged from the quaternary structure of bovine COX, the most profound adaptive substitutions are two contiguous cysteines absent in approximately 99.9% of databased COX I sequences from Eukaryota, Archaea, and Bacteria. This motif lies directly at the docking point of COX I helix 3 and cytochrome c, and modeling of bovine COX I suggests the possibility of an unprecedented helix-terminating disulfide bridge that could alter COX/cytochrome c dissociation kinetics. Thus, the key adaptation in Utricularia likely lies in molecular energetic changes that buttressed the mechanisms responsible for the bladderworts' radical morphological evolution. Along with evidence for COX evolution underlying expansion of the anthropoid neocortex, our findings underscore that important morphological and physiological innovations must often be accompanied by specific adaptations in proteins with basic cellular functions. PMID:15596720

  12. Adaptive evolution of cytochrome c oxidase: Infrastructure for a carnivorous plant radiation.

    PubMed

    Jobson, Richard W; Nielsen, Rasmus; Laakkonen, Liisa; Wikström, Mårten; Albert, Victor A

    2004-12-28

    Much recent attention in the study of adaptation of organismal form has centered on developmental regulation. As such, the highly conserved respiratory machinery of eukaryotic cells might seem an unlikely target for selection supporting novel morphologies. We demonstrate that a dramatic molecular evolutionary rate increase in subunit I of cytochrome c oxidase (COX) from an active-trapping lineage of carnivorous plants is caused by positive Darwinian selection. Bladderworts (Utricularia) trap plankton when water-immersed, negatively pressured suction bladders are triggered. The resetting of traps involves active ion transport, requiring considerable energy expenditure. As judged from the quaternary structure of bovine COX, the most profound adaptive substitutions are two contiguous cysteines absent in approximately 99.9% of databased COX I sequences from Eukaryota, Archaea, and Bacteria. This motif lies directly at the docking point of COX I helix 3 and cytochrome c, and modeling of bovine COX I suggests the possibility of an unprecedented helix-terminating disulfide bridge that could alter COX/cytochrome c dissociation kinetics. Thus, the key adaptation in Utricularia likely lies in molecular energetic changes that buttressed the mechanisms responsible for the bladderworts' radical morphological evolution. Along with evidence for COX evolution underlying expansion of the anthropoid neocortex, our findings underscore that important morphological and physiological innovations must often be accompanied by specific adaptations in proteins with basic cellular functions.

  13. Toward a molecular understanding of adaptive immunity: a chronology, part I

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Kendall A.

    2012-01-01

    The adaptive immune system has been the core of immunology for the past century, as immunologists have been primarily focused on understanding the basis for adaptive immunity for the better part of this time. Immunological thought has undergone an evolution with regard to our understanding as the complexity of the cells and the molecules of the system became elucidated. The original immunologists performed their experiments with whole animals (or humans), and for the most part they were focused on observing what happens when a foreign substance is introduced into the body. However, since Burnet formulated his clonal selection theory we have witnessed reductionist science focused first on cell populations, then individual cells and finally on molecules, in our quests to learn how the system works. This review is the first part of a chronology of our evolution toward a molecular understanding of adaptive immunity. PMID:23230443

  14. Parallel evolution controlled by adaptation and covariation in ammonoid cephalopods

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    Background A major goal in evolutionary biology is to understand the processes that shape the evolutionary trajectory of clades. The repeated and similar large-scale morphological evolutionary trends of distinct lineages suggest that adaptation by means of natural selection (functional constraints) is the major cause of parallel evolution, a very common phenomenon in extinct and extant lineages. However, parallel evolution can result from other processes, which are usually ignored or difficult to identify, such as developmental constraints. Hence, understanding the underlying processes of parallel evolution still requires further research. Results Herein, we present a possible case of parallel evolution between two ammonoid lineages (Auguritidae and Pinacitidae) of Early-Middle Devonian age (405-395 Ma), which are extinct cephalopods with an external, chambered shell. In time and through phylogenetic order of appearance, both lineages display a morphological shift toward more involute coiling (i.e. more tightly coiled whorls), larger adult body size, more complex suture line (the folded walls separating the gas-filled buoyancy-chambers), and the development of an umbilical lid (a very peculiar extension of the lateral shell wall covering the umbilicus) in the most derived taxa. Increased involution toward shells with closed umbilicus has been demonstrated to reflect improved hydrodynamic properties of the shell and thus likely results from similar natural selection pressures. The peculiar umbilical lid might have also added to the improvement of the hydrodynamic properties of the shell. Finally, increasing complexity of suture lines likely results from covariation induced by trends of increasing adult size and whorl overlap given the morphogenetic properties of the suture. Conclusions The morphological evolution of these two Devonian ammonoid lineages follows a near parallel evolutionary path for some important shell characters during several million years and

  15. Remote sensing image subpixel mapping based on adaptive differential evolution.

    PubMed

    Zhong, Yanfei; Zhang, Liangpei

    2012-10-01

    In this paper, a novel subpixel mapping algorithm based on an adaptive differential evolution (DE) algorithm, namely, adaptive-DE subpixel mapping (ADESM), is developed to perform the subpixel mapping task for remote sensing images. Subpixel mapping may provide a fine-resolution map of class labels from coarser spectral unmixing fraction images, with the assumption of spatial dependence. In ADESM, to utilize DE, the subpixel mapping problem is transformed into an optimization problem by maximizing the spatial dependence index. The traditional DE algorithm is an efficient and powerful population-based stochastic global optimizer in continuous optimization problems, but it cannot be applied to the subpixel mapping problem in a discrete search space. In addition, it is not an easy task to properly set control parameters in DE. To avoid these problems, this paper utilizes an adaptive strategy without user-defined parameters, and a reversible-conversion strategy between continuous space and discrete space, to improve the classical DE algorithm. During the process of evolution, they are further improved by enhanced evolution operators, e.g., mutation, crossover, repair, exchange, insertion, and an effective local search to generate new candidate solutions. Experimental results using different types of remote images show that the ADESM algorithm consistently outperforms the previous subpixel mapping algorithms in all the experiments. Based on sensitivity analysis, ADESM, with its self-adaptive control parameter setting, is better than, or at least comparable to, the standard DE algorithm, when considering the accuracy of subpixel mapping, and hence provides an effective new approach to subpixel mapping for remote sensing imagery.

  16. Insights into Arbovirus Evolution and Adaptation from Experimental Studies

    PubMed Central

    Ciota, Alexander T.; Kramer, Laura D.

    2010-01-01

    Arthropod-borne viruses (arboviruses) are maintained in nature by cycling between vertebrate hosts and haematophagous invertebrate vectors. These viruses are responsible for causing a significant public health burden throughout the world, with over 100 species having the capacity to cause human disease. Arbovirus outbreaks in previously naïve environments demonstrate the potential of these pathogens for expansion and emergence, possibly exacerbated more recently by changing climates. These recent outbreaks, together with the continued devastation caused by endemic viruses, such as Dengue virus which persists in many areas, demonstrate the need to better understand the selective pressures that shape arbovirus evolution. Specifically, a comprehensive understanding of host-virus interactions and how they shape both host-specific and virus-specific evolutionary pressures is needed to fully evaluate the factors that govern the potential for host shifts and geographic expansions. One approach to advance our understanding of the factors influencing arbovirus evolution in nature is the use of experimental studies in the laboratory. Here, we review the contributions that laboratory passage and experimental infection studies have made to the field of arbovirus adaptation and evolution, and how these studies contribute to the overall field of arbovirus evolution. In particular, this review focuses on the areas of evolutionary constraints and mutant swarm dynamics; how experimental results compare to theoretical predictions; the importance of arbovirus ecology in shaping viral swarms; and how current knowledge should guide future questions relevant to understanding arbovirus evolution. PMID:21994633

  17. Out of the blue: adaptive visual pigment evolution accompanies Amazon invasion.

    PubMed

    Van Nynatten, Alexander; Bloom, Devin; Chang, Belinda S W; Lovejoy, Nathan R

    2015-07-01

    Incursions of marine water into South America during the Miocene prompted colonization of freshwater habitats by ancestrally marine species and present a unique opportunity to study the molecular evolution of adaptations to varying environments. Freshwater and marine environments are distinct in both spectra and average intensities of available light. Here, we investigate the molecular evolution of rhodopsin, the photosensitive pigment in the eye that activates in response to light, in a clade of South American freshwater anchovies derived from a marine ancestral lineage. Using likelihood-based comparative sequence analyses, we found evidence for positive selection in the rhodopsin of freshwater anchovy lineages at sites known to be important for aspects of rhodopsin function such as spectral tuning. No evidence was found for positive selection in marine lineages, nor in three other genes not involved in vision. Our results suggest that an increased rate of rhodopsin evolution was driven by diversification into freshwater habitats, thereby constituting a rare example of molecular evolution mirroring large-scale palaeogeographic events. PMID:26224386

  18. Directionality of evolution at molecular and organismic levels.

    PubMed

    Livshits, M A; Volkenstein, M V

    1991-01-01

    The molecular evolution theories of Eigen and Kimura are compared and their difference is explained. In terms of Eigen's theory for the evolution of macromolecules, the selection of genotypes occurs directly. The physical meaning of the neutral theory is the degeneracy of the correlation between a phenotype and a genotype at the molecular level. A model theory of evolution on a fitness landscape is proposed. The theory shows that the constraints of selection determined by the structure and dynamics of previous evolution stages increases its rate strongly.

  19. Accelerated evolution of constraint elements for hematophagic adaptation in mosquitoes.

    PubMed

    Wang, Ming-Shan; Adeola, Adeniyi C; Li, Yan; Zhang, Ya-Ping; Wu, Dong-Dong

    2015-11-18

    Comparative genomics is a powerful approach that comprehensively interprets the genome. Herein, we performed whole genome comparative analysis of 16 Diptera genomes, including four mosquitoes and 12 Drosophilae. We found more than 540 000 constraint elements (CEs) in the Diptera genome, with the majority found in the intergenic, coding and intronic regions. Accelerated elements (AEs) identified in mosquitoes were mostly in the protein-coding regions (>93%), which differs from vertebrates in genomic distribution. Some genes functionally enriched in blood digestion, body temperature regulation and insecticide resistance showed rapid evolution not only in the lineage of the recent common ancestor of mosquitoes (RCAM), but also in some mosquito lineages. This may be associated with lineage-specific traits and/or adaptations in comparison with other insects. Our findings revealed that although universally fast evolution acted on biological systems in RCAM, such as hematophagy, same adaptations also appear to have occurred through distinct degrees of evolution in different mosquito species, enabling them to be successful blood feeders in different environments.

  20. Adaptive evolution of a key phytoplankton species to ocean acidification

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lohbeck, Kai T.; Riebesell, Ulf; Reusch, Thorsten B. H.

    2012-05-01

    Ocean acidification, the drop in seawater pH associated with the ongoing enrichment of marine waters with carbon dioxide from fossil fuel burning, may seriously impair marine calcifying organisms. Our present understanding of the sensitivity of marine life to ocean acidification is based primarily on short-term experiments, in which organisms are exposed to increased concentrations of CO2. However, phytoplankton species with short generation times, in particular, may be able to respond to environmental alterations through adaptive evolution. Here, we examine the ability of the world's single most important calcifying organism, the coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi, to evolve in response to ocean acidification in two 500-generation selection experiments. Specifically, we exposed E. huxleyi populations founded by single or multiple clones to increased concentrations of CO2. Around 500 asexual generations later we assessed their fitness. Compared with populations kept at ambient CO2 partial pressure, those selected at increased partial pressure exhibited higher growth rates, in both the single- and multiclone experiment, when tested under ocean acidification conditions. Calcification was partly restored: rates were lower under increased CO2 conditions in all cultures, but were up to 50% higher in adapted compared with non-adapted cultures. We suggest that contemporary evolution could help to maintain the functionality of microbial processes at the base of marine food webs in the face of global change.

  1. Evolution of collective action in adaptive social structures.

    PubMed

    Moreira, João A; Pacheco, Jorge M; Santos, Francisco C

    2013-01-01

    Many problems in nature can be conveniently framed as a problem of evolution of collective cooperative behaviour, often modelled resorting to the tools of evolutionary game theory in well-mixed populations, combined with an appropriate N-person dilemma. Yet, the well-mixed assumption fails to describe the population dynamics whenever individuals have a say in deciding which groups they will participate. Here we propose a simple model in which dynamical group formation is described as a result of a topological evolution of a social network of interactions. We show analytically how evolutionary dynamics under public goods games in finite adaptive networks can be effectively transformed into a N-Person dilemma involving both coordination and co-existence. Such dynamics would be impossible to foresee from more conventional 2-person interactions as well as from descriptions based on infinite, well-mixed populations. Finally, we show how stochastic effects help rendering cooperation viable, promoting polymorphic configurations in which cooperators prevail.

  2. Adaptive evolution of mitochondrial energy metabolism genes associated with increased energy demand in flying insects.

    PubMed

    Yang, Yunxia; Xu, Shixia; Xu, Junxiao; Guo, Yan; Yang, Guang

    2014-01-01

    Insects are unique among invertebrates for their ability to fly, which raises intriguing questions about how energy metabolism in insects evolved and changed along with flight. Although physiological studies indicated that energy consumption differs between flying and non-flying insects, the evolution of molecular energy metabolism mechanisms in insects remains largely unexplored. Considering that about 95% of adenosine triphosphate (ATP) is supplied by mitochondria via oxidative phosphorylation, we examined 13 mitochondrial protein-encoding genes to test whether adaptive evolution of energy metabolism-related genes occurred in insects. The analyses demonstrated that mitochondrial DNA protein-encoding genes are subject to positive selection from the last common ancestor of Pterygota, which evolved primitive flight ability. Positive selection was also found in insects with flight ability, whereas no significant sign of selection was found in flightless insects where the wings had degenerated. In addition, significant positive selection was also identified in the last common ancestor of Neoptera, which changed its flight mode from direct to indirect. Interestingly, detection of more positively selected genes in indirect flight rather than direct flight insects suggested a stronger selective pressure in insects having higher energy consumption. In conclusion, mitochondrial protein-encoding genes involved in energy metabolism were targets of adaptive evolution in response to increased energy demands that arose during the evolution of flight ability in insects.

  3. Within-host co-evolution of chronic viruses and the adaptive immune system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nourmohammad, Armita

    We normally think of evolution occurring in a population of organisms, in response to their external environment. Rapid evolution of cellular populations also occurs within our bodies, as the adaptive immune system works to eliminate infection. Some pathogens, such as HIV, are able to persist in a host for extended periods of time, during which they also evolve to evade the immune response. In this talk I will introduce an analytical framework for the rapid co-evolution of B-cell and viral populations, based on the molecular interactions between them. Since the co-evolution of antibodies and viruses is perpetually out of equilibrium, I will show how to quantify the amount of adaptation in each of the two populations by analysis of their co-evolutionary history. I will discuss the consequences of competition between lineages of antibodies, and characterize the fate of a given lineage dependent on the state of the antibody and viral populations. In particular, I will discuss the conditions for emergence of highly potent broadly neutralizing antibodies, which are now recognized as critical for designing an effective vaccine against HIV.

  4. The Structure and Evolution of Self-Gravitating Molecular Clouds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Holliman, John Herbert, II

    1995-01-01

    We present a theoretical formalism to evaluate the structure of molecular clouds and to determine precollapse conditions in star-forming regions. Models consist of pressure-bounded, self-gravitating spheres of a single -fluid ideal gas. We treat the case without rotation. The analysis is generalized to consider states in hydrostatic equilibrium maintained by multiple pressure components. Individual pressures vary with density as P_i(r) ~ rho^{gamma {rm p},i}(r), where gamma_{rm p},i is the polytropic index. Evolution depends additionally on whether conduction occurs on a dynamical time scale and on the adiabatic index gammai of each component, which is modified to account for the effects of any thermal coupling to the environment of the cloud. Special attention is given to properly representing the major contributors to dynamical support in molecular clouds: the pressures due to static magnetic fields, Alfven waves, and thermal motions. Straightforward adjustments to the model allow us to treat the intrinsically anisotropic support provided by the static fields. We derive structure equations, as well as perturbation equations for performing a linear stability analysis. The analysis provides insight on the nature of dynamical motions due to collapse from an equilibrium state and estimates the mass of condensed objects that form in such a process. After presenting a set of general results, we describe models of star-forming regions that include the major pressure components. We parameterize the extent of ambipolar diffusion. The analysis contributes to the physical understanding of several key results from observations of these regions. Commonly observed quantities are explicitly cross-referenced with model results. We theoretically determine density and linewidth profiles on scales ranging from that of molecular cloud cores to that of giant molecular clouds (GMCs). The model offers an explanation of the mean pressures in GMCs, which are observed to be high relative

  5. Phenotype adjustment promotes adaptive evolution in a game without conflict.

    PubMed

    Yamaguchi, Sachi; Iwasa, Yoh

    2015-06-01

    Organisms may adjust their phenotypes in response to social and physical environments. Such phenotypic plasticity is known to help or retard adaptive evolution. Here, we study the evolutionary outcomes of adaptive phenotypic plasticity in an evolutionary game involving two players who have no conflicts of interest. A possible example is the growth and sex allocation of a lifelong pair of shrimps entrapped in the body of a sponge. We consider random pair formation, the limitation of total resources for growth, and the needs of male investment to fertilize eggs laid by the partner. We compare the following three different evolutionary dynamics: (1) No adjustment: each individual develops a phenotype specified by its own genotype; (2) One-player adjustment: the phenotype of the first player is specified by its own genotype, and the second player chooses the phenotype that maximizes its own fitness; (3) Two-player adjustment: the first player exhibits an initial phenotype specified by its own genotype, the second player chooses a phenotype given that of the first player, and finally, the first player readjusts its phenotype given that of the second player. We demonstrate that both one-player and two-player adjustments evolve to achieve maximum fitness. In contrast, the dynamics without adjustment fails in some cases to evolve outcomes with the highest fitness. For an intermediate range of male cost, the evolution of no adjustment realizes two hermaphrodites with equal size, whereas the one-player and two-player adjustments realize a small male and a large female.

  6. Mechanisms of adaptive evolution. Darwinism and Lamarckism restated.

    PubMed

    Aboitiz, F

    1992-07-01

    This article discusses the conceptual basis of the different mechanisms of adaptive evolution. It is argued that only two such mechanisms may conceivably exist, Lamarckism and Darwinism. Darwinism is the fundamental process generating the diversity of species. Some aspects of the gene-centered approach to Darwinism are questioned, since they do not account for the generation of biological diversity. Diversity in biological design must be explained in relation to the diversity of interactions of organisms (or other higher-level units) with their environment. This aspect is usually overlooked in gene-centered views of evolution. A variant of the gene-selectionist approach has been proposed to account for the spread of cultural traits in human societies. Alternatively, I argue that social evolution is rather driven by what I call pseudo-Lamarckian inheritance. Finally, I argue that Lamarckian and pseudo-Lamarckian inheritance are just special cases of faithful replication which are found in the development of some higher-order units, such as multicellular organisms and human societies.

  7. On the adaptivity and complexity embedded into differential evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Senkerik, Roman; Pluhacek, Michal; Zelinka, Ivan; Jasek, Roman

    2016-06-01

    This research deals with the comparison of the two modern approaches for evolutionary algorithms, which are the adaptivity and complex chaotic dynamics. This paper aims on the investigations on the chaos-driven Differential Evolution (DE) concept. This paper is aimed at the embedding of discrete dissipative chaotic systems in the form of chaotic pseudo random number generators for the DE and comparing the influence to the performance with the state of the art adaptive representative jDE. This research is focused mainly on the possible disadvantages and advantages of both compared approaches. Repeated simulations for Lozi map driving chaotic systems were performed on the simple benchmark functions set, which are more close to the real optimization problems. Obtained results are compared with the canonical not-chaotic and not adaptive DE. Results show that with used simple test functions, the performance of ChaosDE is better in the most cases than jDE and Canonical DE, furthermore due to the unique sequencing in CPRNG given by the hidden chaotic dynamics, thus better and faster selection of unique individuals from population, ChaosDE is faster.

  8. Adaptive network dynamics and evolution of leadership in collective migration

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pais, Darren; Leonard, Naomi E.

    2014-01-01

    The evolution of leadership in migratory populations depends not only on costs and benefits of leadership investments but also on the opportunities for individuals to rely on cues from others through social interactions. We derive an analytically tractable adaptive dynamic network model of collective migration with fast timescale migration dynamics and slow timescale adaptive dynamics of individual leadership investment and social interaction. For large populations, our analysis of bifurcations with respect to investment cost explains the observed hysteretic effect associated with recovery of migration in fragmented environments. Further, we show a minimum connectivity threshold above which there is evolutionary branching into leader and follower populations. For small populations, we show how the topology of the underlying social interaction network influences the emergence and location of leaders in the adaptive system. Our model and analysis can be extended to study the dynamics of collective tracking or collective learning more generally. Thus, this work may inform the design of robotic networks where agents use decentralized strategies that balance direct environmental measurements with agent interactions.

  9. Adaptive evolution of young gene duplicates in mammals

    PubMed Central

    Han, Mira V.; Demuth, Jeffery P.; McGrath, Casey L.; Casola, Claudio; Hahn, Matthew W.

    2009-01-01

    Duplicate genes act as a source of genetic material from which new functions arise. They exist in large numbers in every sequenced eukaryotic genome and may be responsible for many differences in phenotypes between species. However, recent work searching for the targets of positive selection in humans has largely ignored duplicated genes due to complications in orthology assignment. Here we find that a high proportion of young gene duplicates in the human, macaque, mouse, and rat genomes have experienced adaptive natural selection. Approximately 10% of all lineage-specific duplicates show evidence for positive selection on their protein sequences, larger than any reported amount of selection among single-copy genes in these lineages using similar methods. We also find that newly duplicated genes that have been transposed to new chromosomal locations are significantly more likely to have undergone positive selection than the ancestral copy. Human-specific duplicates evolving under adaptive natural selection include a surprising number of genes involved in neuronal and cognitive functions. Our results imply that genome scans for selection that ignore duplicated loci are missing a large fraction of all adaptive substitutions. The results are also in agreement with the classical model of evolution by gene duplication, supporting a common role for neofunctionalization in the long-term maintenance of gene duplicates. PMID:19411603

  10. Elucidating the molecular architecture of adaptation via evolve and resequence experiments.

    PubMed

    Long, Anthony; Liti, Gianni; Luptak, Andrej; Tenaillon, Olivier

    2015-10-01

    Evolve and resequence (E&R) experiments use experimental evolution to adapt populations to a novel environment, then next-generation sequencing to analyse genetic changes. They enable molecular evolution to be monitored in real time on a genome-wide scale. Here, we review the field of E&R experiments across diverse systems, ranging from simple non-living RNA to bacteria, yeast and the complex multicellular organism Drosophila melanogaster. We explore how different evolutionary outcomes in these systems are largely consistent with common population genetics principles. Differences in outcomes across systems are largely explained by different starting population sizes, levels of pre-existing genetic variation, recombination rates and adaptive landscapes. We highlight emerging themes and inconsistencies that future experiments must address.

  11. Elucidating the molecular architecture of adaptation via evolve and resequence experiments

    PubMed Central

    Long, Anthony; Liti, Gianni; Luptak, Andrej; Tenaillon, Olivier

    2016-01-01

    Evolve and resequence (E&R) experiments use experimental evolution to adapt populations to a novel environment, followed by next-generation sequencing. They enable molecular evolution to be monitored in real time at a genome-wide scale. We review the field of E&R experiments across diverse systems, ranging from simple non-living RNA to bacteria, yeast and complex multicellular Drosophila melanogaster. We explore how different evolutionary outcomes in these systems are largely consistent with common population genetics principles. Differences in outcomes across systems are largely explained by different: starting population sizes, levels of pre-existing genetic variation, recombination rates, and adaptive landscapes. We highlight emerging themes and inconsistencies that future experiments must address. PMID:26347030

  12. Molecular evolution: concepts and the origin of disciplines.

    PubMed

    Suárez-Díaz, Edna

    2009-03-01

    This paper focuses on the consolidation of Molecular Evolution, a field originating in the 1960s at the interface of molecular biology, biochemistry, evolutionary biology, biophysics and studies on the origin of life and exobiology. The claim is made that Molecular Evolution became a discipline by integrating different sorts of scientific traditions: experimental, theoretical and comparative. The author critically incorporates Timothy Lenoir's treatment of disciplines (1997), as well as ideas developed by Stephen Toulmin (1962) on the same subject. On their account disciplines are spaces where the social and epistemic dimensions of science are deeply and complexly interwoven. However, a more detailed account of discipline formation and the dynamics of an emerging disciplinary field is lacking in their analysis. The present essay suggests focusing on the role of scientific concepts in the double configuration of disciplines: the social/political and the epistemic order. In the case of Molecular Evolution the concepts of molecular clock and informational molecules played a central role, both in differentiating molecular from classical evolutionists, and in promoting communication between the different sorts of traditions integrated in Molecular Evolution. The paper finishes with a reflection on the historicity of disciplines, and the historicity of our concepts of disciplines. PMID:19268873

  13. Automatic Evolution of Molecular Nanotechnology Designs

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Globus, Al; Lawton, John; Wipke, Todd; Saini, Subhash (Technical Monitor)

    1998-01-01

    This paper describes strategies for automatically generating designs for analog circuits at the molecular level. Software maps out the edges and vertices of potential nanotechnology systems on graphs, then selects appropriate ones through evolutionary or genetic paradigms.

  14. Molecular clouds. [significance in stellar evolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Thaddeus, P.

    1977-01-01

    An attempt is made to understand star formation in the context of the dense interstellar molecular gas from which stars are made. Attention is given to how molecular observations (e.g., UV spectroscopy and radio 21-cm and recombination line observations) provide data on the physical state of the dense interstellar gas; observations of H II regions, stellar associations, and dark nebulae are discussed. CO clouds are studied with reference to radial velocity, temperature, density, ionization, magnetic field.

  15. Adaptive evolution of hepcidin genes in antarctic notothenioid fishes.

    PubMed

    Xu, Qianghua; Cheng, Chi-Hing Christina; Hu, Peng; Ye, Hua; Chen, Zuozhou; Cao, Lixue; Chen, Lei; Shen, Yu; Chen, Liangbiao

    2008-06-01

    Hepcidin is a small bioactive peptide with dual roles as an antimicrobial peptide and as the principal hormonal regulator of iron homeostasis in human and mouse. Hepcidin homologs of very similar structures are found in lower vertebrates, all comprise approximately 20-25 amino acids with 8 highly conserved cysteines forming 4 intramolecular disulfide bonds, giving hepcidin a hairpin structure. Hepcidins are particularly diverse in teleost fishes, which may be related to the diversity of aquatic environments with varying degree of pathogen challenge, oxygenation, and iron concentration, factors known to alter hepcidin expression in mammals. We characterized the diversity of hepcidin genes of the Antarctic notothenioid fishes that are endemic to the world's coldest and most oxygen-rich marine water. Notothenioid fishes have at least 4 hepcidin variants, in 2 distinctive structural types. Type I hepcidins comprise 3 distinct variants that are homologs of the widespread 8-cysteine hepcidins. Type II is a novel 4-cysteine variant and therefore only 2 possible disulfide bonds, highly expressed in hematopoietic tissues. Analyses of d(N)/d(S) substitution rate ratios and likelihood ratio test under site-specific models detected significant signal of positive Darwinian selection on the mature hepcidin-coding sequence, suggesting adaptive evolution of notothenioid hepcidins. Genomic polymerase chain reaction and Southern hybridization showed that the novel type II hepcidin occurs exclusively in lineages of the Antarctic notothenioid radiation but not in the basal non-Antarctic taxa, and lineage-specific positive selection was detected on the branch leading to the type II hepcidin clade under branch-site models, suggesting adaptive evolution of the reduced cysteine variant in response to the polar environment. We also isolated a structurally distinct 4-cysteine (4cys) hepcidin from an Antarctic eelpout that is unrelated to the notothenioids but inhabits the same freezing

  16. Adaptive evolution of hepcidin genes in antarctic notothenioid fishes.

    PubMed

    Xu, Qianghua; Cheng, Chi-Hing Christina; Hu, Peng; Ye, Hua; Chen, Zuozhou; Cao, Lixue; Chen, Lei; Shen, Yu; Chen, Liangbiao

    2008-06-01

    Hepcidin is a small bioactive peptide with dual roles as an antimicrobial peptide and as the principal hormonal regulator of iron homeostasis in human and mouse. Hepcidin homologs of very similar structures are found in lower vertebrates, all comprise approximately 20-25 amino acids with 8 highly conserved cysteines forming 4 intramolecular disulfide bonds, giving hepcidin a hairpin structure. Hepcidins are particularly diverse in teleost fishes, which may be related to the diversity of aquatic environments with varying degree of pathogen challenge, oxygenation, and iron concentration, factors known to alter hepcidin expression in mammals. We characterized the diversity of hepcidin genes of the Antarctic notothenioid fishes that are endemic to the world's coldest and most oxygen-rich marine water. Notothenioid fishes have at least 4 hepcidin variants, in 2 distinctive structural types. Type I hepcidins comprise 3 distinct variants that are homologs of the widespread 8-cysteine hepcidins. Type II is a novel 4-cysteine variant and therefore only 2 possible disulfide bonds, highly expressed in hematopoietic tissues. Analyses of d(N)/d(S) substitution rate ratios and likelihood ratio test under site-specific models detected significant signal of positive Darwinian selection on the mature hepcidin-coding sequence, suggesting adaptive evolution of notothenioid hepcidins. Genomic polymerase chain reaction and Southern hybridization showed that the novel type II hepcidin occurs exclusively in lineages of the Antarctic notothenioid radiation but not in the basal non-Antarctic taxa, and lineage-specific positive selection was detected on the branch leading to the type II hepcidin clade under branch-site models, suggesting adaptive evolution of the reduced cysteine variant in response to the polar environment. We also isolated a structurally distinct 4-cysteine (4cys) hepcidin from an Antarctic eelpout that is unrelated to the notothenioids but inhabits the same freezing

  17. Evolution of eye development in the darkness of caves: adaptation, drift, or both?

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Animals inhabiting the darkness of caves are generally blind and de-pigmented, regardless of the phylum they belong to. Survival in this environment is an enormous challenge, the most obvious being to find food and mates without the help of vision, and the loss of eyes in cave animals is often accompanied by an enhancement of other sensory apparatuses. Here we review the recent literature describing developmental biology and molecular evolution studies in order to discuss the evolutionary mechanisms underlying adaptation to life in the dark. We conclude that both genetic drift (neutral hypothesis) and direct and indirect selection (selective hypothesis) occurred together during the loss of eyes in cave animals. We also identify some future directions of research to better understand adaptation to total darkness, for which integrative analyses relying on evo-devo approaches associated with thorough ecological and population genomic studies should shed some light. PMID:24079393

  18. Molecular evolution of the capsid gene in human norovirus genogroup II

    PubMed Central

    Kobayashi, Miho; Matsushima, Yuki; Motoya, Takumi; Sakon, Naomi; Shigemoto, Naoki; Okamoto-Nakagawa, Reiko; Nishimura, Koichi; Yamashita, Yasutaka; Kuroda, Makoto; Saruki, Nobuhiro; Ryo, Akihide; Saraya, Takeshi; Morita, Yukio; Shirabe, Komei; Ishikawa, Mariko; Takahashi, Tomoko; Shinomiya, Hiroto; Okabe, Nobuhiko; Nagasawa, Koo; Suzuki, Yoshiyuki; Katayama, Kazuhiko; Kimura, Hirokazu

    2016-01-01

    Capsid protein of norovirus genogroup II (GII) plays crucial roles in host infection. Although studies on capsid gene evolution have been conducted for a few genotypes of norovirus, the molecular evolution of norovirus GII is not well understood. Here we report the molecular evolution of all GII genotypes, using various bioinformatics techniques. The time-scaled phylogenetic tree showed that the present GII strains diverged from GIV around 1630CE at a high evolutionary rate (around 10−3 substitutions/site/year), resulting in three lineages. The GII capsid gene had large pairwise distances (maximum > 0.39). The effective population sizes of the present GII strains were large (>102) for about 400 years. Positive (20) and negative (over 450) selection sites were estimated. Moreover, some linear and conformational B-cell epitopes were found in the deduced GII capsid protein. These results suggested that norovirus GII strains rapidly evolved with high divergence and adaptation to humans. PMID:27384324

  19. Adaptive Evolution of the Myo6 Gene in Old World Fruit Bats (Family: Pteropodidae)

    PubMed Central

    Shen, Bin; Han, Xiuqun; Jones, Gareth; Rossiter, Stephen J.; Zhang, Shuyi

    2013-01-01

    Myosin VI (encoded by the Myo6 gene) is highly expressed in the inner and outer hair cells of the ear, retina, and polarized epithelial cells such as kidney proximal tubule cells and intestinal enterocytes. The Myo6 gene is thought to be involved in a wide range of physiological functions such as hearing, vision, and clathrin-mediated endocytosis. Bats (Chiroptera) represent one of the most fascinating mammal groups for molecular evolutionary studies of the Myo6 gene. A diversity of specialized adaptations occur among different bat lineages, such as echolocation and associated high-frequency hearing in laryngeal echolocating bats, large eyes and a strong dependence on vision in Old World fruit bats (Pteropodidae), and specialized high-carbohydrate but low-nitrogen diets in both Old World and New World fruit bats (Phyllostomidae). To investigate what role(s) the Myo6 gene might fulfill in bats, we sequenced the coding region of the Myo6 gene in 15 bat species and used molecular evolutionary analyses to detect evidence of positive selection in different bat lineages. We also conducted real-time PCR assays to explore the expression levels of Myo6 in a range of tissues from three representative bat species. Molecular evolutionary analyses revealed that the Myo6 gene, which was widely considered as a hearing gene, has undergone adaptive evolution in the Old World fruit bats which lack laryngeal echolocation and associated high-frequency hearing. Real-time PCR showed the highest expression level of the Myo6 gene in the kidney among ten tissues examined in three bat species, indicating an important role for this gene in kidney function. We suggest that Myo6 has undergone adaptive evolution in Old World fruit bats in relation to receptor-mediated endocytosis for the preservation of protein and essential nutrients. PMID:23620821

  20. Evolutionary dynamics of molecular markers during local adaptation: a case study in Drosophila subobscura

    PubMed Central

    2008-01-01

    Background Natural selection and genetic drift are major forces responsible for temporal genetic changes in populations. Furthermore, these evolutionary forces may interact with each other. Here we study the impact of an ongoing adaptive process at the molecular genetic level by analyzing the temporal genetic changes throughout 40 generations of adaptation to a common laboratory environment. Specifically, genetic variability, population differentiation and demographic structure were compared in two replicated groups of Drosophila subobscura populations recently sampled from different wild sources. Results We found evidence for a decline in genetic variability through time, along with an increase in genetic differentiation between all populations studied. The observed decline in genetic variability was higher during the first 14 generations of laboratory adaptation. The two groups of replicated populations showed overall similarity in variability patterns. Our results also revealed changing demographic structure of the populations during laboratory evolution, with lower effective population sizes in the early phase of the adaptive process. One of the ten microsatellites analyzed showed a clearly distinct temporal pattern of allele frequency change, suggesting the occurrence of positive selection affecting the region around that particular locus. Conclusion Genetic drift was responsible for most of the divergence and loss of variability between and within replicates, with most changes occurring during the first generations of laboratory adaptation. We also found evidence suggesting a selective sweep, despite the low number of molecular markers analyzed. Overall, there was a similarity of evolutionary dynamics at the molecular level in our laboratory populations, despite distinct genetic backgrounds and some differences in phenotypic evolution. PMID:18302790

  1. Dual-phase evolution in complex adaptive systems

    PubMed Central

    Paperin, Greg; Green, David G.; Sadedin, Suzanne

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the origins of complexity is a key challenge in many sciences. Although networks are known to underlie most systems, showing how they contribute to well-known phenomena remains an issue. Here, we show that recurrent phase transitions in network connectivity underlie emergent phenomena in many systems. We identify properties that are typical of systems in different connectivity phases, as well as characteristics commonly associated with the phase transitions. We synthesize these common features into a common framework, which we term dual-phase evolution (DPE). Using this framework, we review the literature from several disciplines to show that recurrent connectivity phase transitions underlie the complex properties of many biological, physical and human systems. We argue that the DPE framework helps to explain many complex phenomena, including perpetual novelty, modularity, scale-free networks and criticality. Our review concludes with a discussion of the way DPE relates to other frameworks, in particular, self-organized criticality and the adaptive cycle. PMID:21247947

  2. Comparative genomics reveals insights into avian genome evolution and adaptation.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Guojie; Li, Cai; Li, Qiye; Li, Bo; Larkin, Denis M; Lee, Chul; Storz, Jay F; Antunes, Agostinho; Greenwold, Matthew J; Meredith, Robert W; Ödeen, Anders; Cui, Jie; Zhou, Qi; Xu, Luohao; Pan, Hailin; Wang, Zongji; Jin, Lijun; Zhang, Pei; Hu, Haofu; Yang, Wei; Hu, Jiang; Xiao, Jin; Yang, Zhikai; Liu, Yang; Xie, Qiaolin; Yu, Hao; Lian, Jinmin; Wen, Ping; Zhang, Fang; Li, Hui; Zeng, Yongli; Xiong, Zijun; Liu, Shiping; Zhou, Long; Huang, Zhiyong; An, Na; Wang, Jie; Zheng, Qiumei; Xiong, Yingqi; Wang, Guangbiao; Wang, Bo; Wang, Jingjing; Fan, Yu; da Fonseca, Rute R; Alfaro-Núñez, Alonzo; Schubert, Mikkel; Orlando, Ludovic; Mourier, Tobias; Howard, Jason T; Ganapathy, Ganeshkumar; Pfenning, Andreas; Whitney, Osceola; Rivas, Miriam V; Hara, Erina; Smith, Julia; Farré, Marta; Narayan, Jitendra; Slavov, Gancho; Romanov, Michael N; Borges, Rui; Machado, João Paulo; Khan, Imran; Springer, Mark S; Gatesy, John; Hoffmann, Federico G; Opazo, Juan C; Håstad, Olle; Sawyer, Roger H; Kim, Heebal; Kim, Kyu-Won; Kim, Hyeon Jeong; Cho, Seoae; Li, Ning; Huang, Yinhua; Bruford, Michael W; Zhan, Xiangjiang; Dixon, Andrew; Bertelsen, Mads F; Derryberry, Elizabeth; Warren, Wesley; Wilson, Richard K; Li, Shengbin; Ray, David A; Green, Richard E; O'Brien, Stephen J; Griffin, Darren; Johnson, Warren E; Haussler, David; Ryder, Oliver A; Willerslev, Eske; Graves, Gary R; Alström, Per; Fjeldså, Jon; Mindell, David P; Edwards, Scott V; Braun, Edward L; Rahbek, Carsten; Burt, David W; Houde, Peter; Zhang, Yong; Yang, Huanming; Wang, Jian; Jarvis, Erich D; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Wang, Jun

    2014-12-12

    Birds are the most species-rich class of tetrapod vertebrates and have wide relevance across many research fields. We explored bird macroevolution using full genomes from 48 avian species representing all major extant clades. The avian genome is principally characterized by its constrained size, which predominantly arose because of lineage-specific erosion of repetitive elements, large segmental deletions, and gene loss. Avian genomes furthermore show a remarkably high degree of evolutionary stasis at the levels of nucleotide sequence, gene synteny, and chromosomal structure. Despite this pattern of conservation, we detected many non-neutral evolutionary changes in protein-coding genes and noncoding regions. These analyses reveal that pan-avian genomic diversity covaries with adaptations to different lifestyles and convergent evolution of traits. PMID:25504712

  3. Comparative genomics reveals insights into avian genome evolution and adaptation.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Guojie; Li, Cai; Li, Qiye; Li, Bo; Larkin, Denis M; Lee, Chul; Storz, Jay F; Antunes, Agostinho; Greenwold, Matthew J; Meredith, Robert W; Ödeen, Anders; Cui, Jie; Zhou, Qi; Xu, Luohao; Pan, Hailin; Wang, Zongji; Jin, Lijun; Zhang, Pei; Hu, Haofu; Yang, Wei; Hu, Jiang; Xiao, Jin; Yang, Zhikai; Liu, Yang; Xie, Qiaolin; Yu, Hao; Lian, Jinmin; Wen, Ping; Zhang, Fang; Li, Hui; Zeng, Yongli; Xiong, Zijun; Liu, Shiping; Zhou, Long; Huang, Zhiyong; An, Na; Wang, Jie; Zheng, Qiumei; Xiong, Yingqi; Wang, Guangbiao; Wang, Bo; Wang, Jingjing; Fan, Yu; da Fonseca, Rute R; Alfaro-Núñez, Alonzo; Schubert, Mikkel; Orlando, Ludovic; Mourier, Tobias; Howard, Jason T; Ganapathy, Ganeshkumar; Pfenning, Andreas; Whitney, Osceola; Rivas, Miriam V; Hara, Erina; Smith, Julia; Farré, Marta; Narayan, Jitendra; Slavov, Gancho; Romanov, Michael N; Borges, Rui; Machado, João Paulo; Khan, Imran; Springer, Mark S; Gatesy, John; Hoffmann, Federico G; Opazo, Juan C; Håstad, Olle; Sawyer, Roger H; Kim, Heebal; Kim, Kyu-Won; Kim, Hyeon Jeong; Cho, Seoae; Li, Ning; Huang, Yinhua; Bruford, Michael W; Zhan, Xiangjiang; Dixon, Andrew; Bertelsen, Mads F; Derryberry, Elizabeth; Warren, Wesley; Wilson, Richard K; Li, Shengbin; Ray, David A; Green, Richard E; O'Brien, Stephen J; Griffin, Darren; Johnson, Warren E; Haussler, David; Ryder, Oliver A; Willerslev, Eske; Graves, Gary R; Alström, Per; Fjeldså, Jon; Mindell, David P; Edwards, Scott V; Braun, Edward L; Rahbek, Carsten; Burt, David W; Houde, Peter; Zhang, Yong; Yang, Huanming; Wang, Jian; Jarvis, Erich D; Gilbert, M Thomas P; Wang, Jun

    2014-12-12

    Birds are the most species-rich class of tetrapod vertebrates and have wide relevance across many research fields. We explored bird macroevolution using full genomes from 48 avian species representing all major extant clades. The avian genome is principally characterized by its constrained size, which predominantly arose because of lineage-specific erosion of repetitive elements, large segmental deletions, and gene loss. Avian genomes furthermore show a remarkably high degree of evolutionary stasis at the levels of nucleotide sequence, gene synteny, and chromosomal structure. Despite this pattern of conservation, we detected many non-neutral evolutionary changes in protein-coding genes and noncoding regions. These analyses reveal that pan-avian genomic diversity covaries with adaptations to different lifestyles and convergent evolution of traits.

  4. Comparative genomics reveals insights into avian genome evolution and adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Guojie; Li, Cai; Li, Qiye; Li, Bo; Larkin, Denis M.; Lee, Chul; Storz, Jay F.; Antunes, Agostinho; Greenwold, Matthew J.; Meredith, Robert W.; Ödeen, Anders; Cui, Jie; Zhou, Qi; Xu, Luohao; Pan, Hailin; Wang, Zongji; Jin, Lijun; Zhang, Pei; Hu, Haofu; Yang, Wei; Hu, Jiang; Xiao, Jin; Yang, Zhikai; Liu, Yang; Xie, Qiaolin; Yu, Hao; Lian, Jinmin; Wen, Ping; Zhang, Fang; Li, Hui; Zeng, Yongli; Xiong, Zijun; Liu, Shiping; Zhou, Long; Huang, Zhiyong; An, Na; Wang, Jie; Zheng, Qiumei; Xiong, Yingqi; Wang, Guangbiao; Wang, Bo; Wang, Jingjing; Fan, Yu; da Fonseca, Rute R.; Alfaro-Núñez, Alonzo; Schubert, Mikkel; Orlando, Ludovic; Mourier, Tobias; Howard, Jason T.; Ganapathy, Ganeshkumar; Pfenning, Andreas; Whitney, Osceola; Rivas, Miriam V.; Hara, Erina; Smith, Julia; Farré, Marta; Narayan, Jitendra; Slavov, Gancho; Romanov, Michael N; Borges, Rui; Machado, João Paulo; Khan, Imran; Springer, Mark S.; Gatesy, John; Hoffmann, Federico G.; Opazo, Juan C.; Håstad, Olle; Sawyer, Roger H.; Kim, Heebal; Kim, Kyu-Won; Kim, Hyeon Jeong; Cho, Seoae; Li, Ning; Huang, Yinhua; Bruford, Michael W.; Zhan, Xiangjiang; Dixon, Andrew; Bertelsen, Mads F.; Derryberry, Elizabeth; Warren, Wesley; Wilson, Richard K; Li, Shengbin; Ray, David A.; Green, Richard E.; O’Brien, Stephen J.; Griffin, Darren; Johnson, Warren E.; Haussler, David; Ryder, Oliver A.; Willerslev, Eske; Graves, Gary R.; Alström, Per; Fjeldså, Jon; Mindell, David P.; Edwards, Scott V.; Braun, Edward L.; Rahbek, Carsten; Burt, David W.; Houde, Peter; Zhang, Yong; Yang, Huanming; Wang, Jian; Jarvis, Erich D.; Gilbert, M. Thomas P.; Wang, Jun

    2015-01-01

    Birds are the most species-rich class of tetrapod vertebrates and have wide relevance across many research fields. We explored bird macroevolution using full genomes from 48 avian species representing all major extant clades. The avian genome is principally characterized by its constrained size, which predominantly arose because of lineage-specific erosion of repetitive elements, large segmental deletions, and gene loss. Avian genomes furthermore show a remarkably high degree of evolutionary stasis at the levels of nucleotide sequence, gene synteny, and chromosomal structure. Despite this pattern of conservation, we detected many non-neutral evolutionary changes in protein-coding genes and noncoding regions. These analyses reveal that pan-avian genomic diversity covaries with adaptations to different lifestyles and convergent evolution of traits. PMID:25504712

  5. Adaptive gains through repeated gene loss: parallel evolution of cyanogenesis polymorphisms in the genus Trifolium (Fabaceae).

    PubMed

    Olsen, Kenneth M; Kooyers, Nicholas J; Small, Linda L

    2014-08-01

    Variation in cyanogenesis (hydrogen cyanide release following tissue damage) was first noted in populations of white clover more than a century ago, and subsequent decades of research have established this system as a classic example of an adaptive chemical defence polymorphism. Here, we document polymorphisms for cyanogenic components in several relatives of white clover, and we determine the molecular basis of this trans-specific adaptive variation. One hundred and thirty-nine plants, representing 13 of the 14 species within Trifolium section Trifoliastrum, plus additional species across the genus, were assayed for cyanogenic components (cyanogenic glucosides and their hydrolysing enzyme, linamarase) and for the presence of underlying cyanogenesis genes (CYP79D15 and Li, respectively). One or both cyanogenic components were detected in seven species, all within section Trifoliastrum; polymorphisms for the presence/absence (PA) of components were detected in six species. In a pattern that parallels our previous findings for white clover, all observed biochemical polymorphisms correspond to gene PA polymorphisms at CYP79D15 and Li. Relationships of DNA sequence haplotypes at the cyanogenesis loci and flanking genomic regions suggest independent evolution of gene deletions within species. This study thus provides evidence for the parallel evolution of adaptive biochemical polymorphisms through recurrent gene deletions in multiple species.

  6. Putative RNA-directed adaptive mutations in cancer evolution

    PubMed Central

    Auboeuf, Didier

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Understanding the molecular mechanisms behind the capacity of cancer cells to adapt to the tumor microenvironment and to anticancer therapies is a major challenge. In this context, cancer is believed to be an evolutionary process where random mutations and the selection process shape the mutational pattern and phenotype of cancer cells. This article challenges the notion of randomness of some cancer-associated mutations by describing molecular mechanisms involving stress-mediated biogenesis of mRNA-derived small RNAs able to target and increase the local mutation rate of the genomic loci they originate from. It is proposed that the probability of some mutations at specific loci could be increased in a stress-specific and RNA-depending manner. This would increase the probability of generating mutations that could alleviate stress situations, such as those triggered by anticancer drugs. Such a mechanism is made possible because tumor- and anticancer drug-associated stress situations trigger both cellular reprogramming and inflammation, which leads cancer cells to express molecular tools allowing them to “attack” and mutate their own genome in an RNA-directed manner. PMID:27715501

  7. The Burmese python genome reveals the molecular basis for extreme adaptation in snakes.

    PubMed

    Castoe, Todd A; de Koning, A P Jason; Hall, Kathryn T; Card, Daren C; Schield, Drew R; Fujita, Matthew K; Ruggiero, Robert P; Degner, Jack F; Daza, Juan M; Gu, Wanjun; Reyes-Velasco, Jacobo; Shaney, Kyle J; Castoe, Jill M; Fox, Samuel E; Poole, Alex W; Polanco, Daniel; Dobry, Jason; Vandewege, Michael W; Li, Qing; Schott, Ryan K; Kapusta, Aurélie; Minx, Patrick; Feschotte, Cédric; Uetz, Peter; Ray, David A; Hoffmann, Federico G; Bogden, Robert; Smith, Eric N; Chang, Belinda S W; Vonk, Freek J; Casewell, Nicholas R; Henkel, Christiaan V; Richardson, Michael K; Mackessy, Stephen P; Bronikowski, Anne M; Bronikowsi, Anne M; Yandell, Mark; Warren, Wesley C; Secor, Stephen M; Pollock, David D

    2013-12-17

    Snakes possess many extreme morphological and physiological adaptations. Identification of the molecular basis of these traits can provide novel understanding for vertebrate biology and medicine. Here, we study snake biology using the genome sequence of the Burmese python (Python molurus bivittatus), a model of extreme physiological and metabolic adaptation. We compare the python and king cobra genomes along with genomic samples from other snakes and perform transcriptome analysis to gain insights into the extreme phenotypes of the python. We discovered rapid and massive transcriptional responses in multiple organ systems that occur on feeding and coordinate major changes in organ size and function. Intriguingly, the homologs of these genes in humans are associated with metabolism, development, and pathology. We also found that many snake metabolic genes have undergone positive selection, which together with the rapid evolution of mitochondrial proteins, provides evidence for extensive adaptive redesign of snake metabolic pathways. Additional evidence for molecular adaptation and gene family expansions and contractions is associated with major physiological and phenotypic adaptations in snakes; genes involved are related to cell cycle, development, lungs, eyes, heart, intestine, and skeletal structure, including GRB2-associated binding protein 1, SSH, WNT16, and bone morphogenetic protein 7. Finally, changes in repetitive DNA content, guanine-cytosine isochore structure, and nucleotide substitution rates indicate major shifts in the structure and evolution of snake genomes compared with other amniotes. Phenotypic and physiological novelty in snakes seems to be driven by system-wide coordination of protein adaptation, gene expression, and changes in the structure of the genome. PMID:24297902

  8. The Burmese python genome reveals the molecular basis for extreme adaptation in snakes.

    PubMed

    Castoe, Todd A; de Koning, A P Jason; Hall, Kathryn T; Card, Daren C; Schield, Drew R; Fujita, Matthew K; Ruggiero, Robert P; Degner, Jack F; Daza, Juan M; Gu, Wanjun; Reyes-Velasco, Jacobo; Shaney, Kyle J; Castoe, Jill M; Fox, Samuel E; Poole, Alex W; Polanco, Daniel; Dobry, Jason; Vandewege, Michael W; Li, Qing; Schott, Ryan K; Kapusta, Aurélie; Minx, Patrick; Feschotte, Cédric; Uetz, Peter; Ray, David A; Hoffmann, Federico G; Bogden, Robert; Smith, Eric N; Chang, Belinda S W; Vonk, Freek J; Casewell, Nicholas R; Henkel, Christiaan V; Richardson, Michael K; Mackessy, Stephen P; Bronikowski, Anne M; Bronikowsi, Anne M; Yandell, Mark; Warren, Wesley C; Secor, Stephen M; Pollock, David D

    2013-12-17

    Snakes possess many extreme morphological and physiological adaptations. Identification of the molecular basis of these traits can provide novel understanding for vertebrate biology and medicine. Here, we study snake biology using the genome sequence of the Burmese python (Python molurus bivittatus), a model of extreme physiological and metabolic adaptation. We compare the python and king cobra genomes along with genomic samples from other snakes and perform transcriptome analysis to gain insights into the extreme phenotypes of the python. We discovered rapid and massive transcriptional responses in multiple organ systems that occur on feeding and coordinate major changes in organ size and function. Intriguingly, the homologs of these genes in humans are associated with metabolism, development, and pathology. We also found that many snake metabolic genes have undergone positive selection, which together with the rapid evolution of mitochondrial proteins, provides evidence for extensive adaptive redesign of snake metabolic pathways. Additional evidence for molecular adaptation and gene family expansions and contractions is associated with major physiological and phenotypic adaptations in snakes; genes involved are related to cell cycle, development, lungs, eyes, heart, intestine, and skeletal structure, including GRB2-associated binding protein 1, SSH, WNT16, and bone morphogenetic protein 7. Finally, changes in repetitive DNA content, guanine-cytosine isochore structure, and nucleotide substitution rates indicate major shifts in the structure and evolution of snake genomes compared with other amniotes. Phenotypic and physiological novelty in snakes seems to be driven by system-wide coordination of protein adaptation, gene expression, and changes in the structure of the genome.

  9. Adaptive modelling of structured molecular representations for toxicity prediction

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bertinetto, Carlo; Duce, Celia; Micheli, Alessio; Solaro, Roberto; Tiné, Maria Rosaria

    2012-12-01

    We investigated the possibility of modelling structure-toxicity relationships by direct treatment of the molecular structure (without using descriptors) through an adaptive model able to retain the appropriate structural information. With respect to traditional descriptor-based approaches, this provides a more general and flexible way to tackle prediction problems that is particularly suitable when little or no background knowledge is available. Our method employs a tree-structured molecular representation, which is processed by a recursive neural network (RNN). To explore the realization of RNN modelling in toxicological problems, we employed a data set containing growth impairment concentrations (IGC50) for Tetrahymena pyriformis.

  10. Adaptive evolution of facial colour patterns in Neotropical primates.

    PubMed

    Santana, Sharlene E; Lynch Alfaro, Jessica; Alfaro, Michael E

    2012-06-01

    The rich diversity of primate faces has interested naturalists for over a century. Researchers have long proposed that social behaviours have shaped the evolution of primate facial diversity. However, the primate face constitutes a unique structure where the diverse and potentially competing functions of communication, ecology and physiology intersect, and the major determinants of facial diversity remain poorly understood. Here, we provide the first evidence for an adaptive role of facial colour patterns and pigmentation within Neotropical primates. Consistent with the hypothesis that facial patterns function in communication and species recognition, we find that species living in smaller groups and in sympatry with a higher number of congener species have evolved more complex patterns of facial colour. The evolution of facial pigmentation and hair length is linked to ecological factors, and ecogeographical rules related to UV radiation and thermoregulation are met by some facial regions. Our results demonstrate the interaction of behavioural and ecological factors in shaping one of the most outstanding facial diversities of any mammalian lineage.

  11. Molecular evolution of the vertebrate mechanosensory cell and ear

    PubMed Central

    Fritzsch, Bernd; Beisel, Kirk W.; Pauley, Sarah; Soukup, Garrett

    2014-01-01

    The molecular basis of mechanosensation, mechanosensory cell development and mechanosensory organ development is reviewed with an emphasis on its evolution. In contrast to eye evolution and development, which apparently modified a genetic program through intercalation of genes between the master control genes on the top (Pax6, Eya1, Six1) of the hierarchy and the structural genes (rhodopsin) at the bottom, the as yet molecularly unknown mechanosensory channel precludes such a firm conclusion for mechanosensors. However, recent years have seen the identification of several structural genes which are involved in mechanosensory tethering and several transcription factors controlling mechanosensory cell and organ development; these warrant the interpretation of available data in very much the same fashion as for eye evolution: molecular homology combined with potential morphological parallelism. This assertion of molecular homology is strongly supported by recent findings of a highly conserved set of microRNAs that appear to be associated with mechanosensory cell development across phyla. The conservation of transcription factors and their regulators fits very well to the known or presumed mechanosensory specializations which can be mostly grouped as variations of a common cellular theme. Given the widespread distribution of the molecular ability to form mechanosensory cells, it comes as no surprise that structurally different mechanosensory organs evolved in different phyla, presenting a variation of a common theme specified by a conserved set of transcription factors in their cellular development. Within vertebrates and arthropods, some mechanosensory organs evolved into auditory organs, greatly increasing sensitivity to sound through modifications of accessory structures to direct sound to the specific sensory epithelia. However, while great attention has been paid to the evolution of these accessory structures in vertebrate fossils, comparatively less attention has

  12. Molecular evolution of bat color vision genes.

    PubMed

    Wang, Daryi; Oakley, Todd; Mower, Jeffrey; Shimmin, Lawrence C; Yim, Sokchea; Honeycutt, Rodney L; Tsao, Hsienshao; Li, Wen-Hsiung

    2004-02-01

    The two suborders of bats, Megachiroptera (megabats) and Microchiroptera (microbats), use different sensory modalities for perceiving their environment. Megabats are crepuscular and rely on a well-developed eyes and visual pathway, whereas microbats occupy a nocturnal niche and use acoustic orientation or echolocation more than vision as the major means of perceiving their environment. In view of the differences associated with their sensory systems, we decided to investigate the function and evolution of color vision (opsin genes) in these two suborders of bats. The middle/long wavelength (M/L) and short wavelength (S) opsin genes were sequenced from two frugivorous species of megabats, Haplonycteris fischeri and Pteropus dasymallus formosus, and one insectivorous species of microbat, Myotis velifer. Contrary to the situation in primates, where many nocturnal species have lost the functional S opsin gene, both crepuscular and strictly nocturnal species of bats that we examined have functional M/L and S opsin genes. Surprisingly, the S opsin in these bats may be sensitive to UV light, which is relatively more abundant at dawn and at dusk. The M/L opsin in these bats appears to be the L type, which is sensitive to red and may be helpful for identifying fruits among leaves or for other purposes. Most interestingly, H. fischeri has a recent duplication of the M/L opsin gene, representing to date the only known case of opsin gene duplication in non-primate mammals. Some of these observations are unexpected and may provide insights into the effect of nocturnal life on the evolution of opsin genes in mammals and the evolution of the life history traits of bats in general.

  13. Back to Water: Signature of Adaptive Evolution in Cetacean Mitochondrial tRNAs

    PubMed Central

    Patarnello, Tomaso; Cozzi, Bruno; Negrisolo, Enrico

    2016-01-01

    The mitochondrion is the power plant of the eukaryotic cell, and tRNAs are the fundamental components of its translational machinery. In the present paper, the evolution of mitochondrial tRNAs was investigated in the Cetacea, a clade of Cetartiodactyla that retuned to water and thus had to adapt its metabolism to a different medium than that of its mainland ancestors. Our analysis focussed on identifying the factors that influenced the evolution of Cetacea tRNA double-helix elements, which play a pivotal role in the formation of the secondary and tertiary structures of each tRNA and consequently manipulate the whole translation machinery of the mitochondrion. Our analyses showed that the substitution pathways in the stems of different tRNAs were influenced by various factors, determining a molecular evolution that was unique to each of the 22 tRNAs. Our data suggested that the composition, AT-skew, and GC-skew of the tRNA stems were the main factors influencing the substitution process. In particular, the range of variation and the fluctuation of these parameters affected the fate of single tRNAs. Strong heterogeneity was observed among the different species of Cetacea. Finally, it appears that the evolution of mitochondrial tRNAs was also shaped by the environments in which the Cetacean taxa differentiated. This latter effect was particularly evident in toothed whales that either live in freshwater or are deep divers. PMID:27336480

  14. Back to Water: Signature of Adaptive Evolution in Cetacean Mitochondrial tRNAs.

    PubMed

    Montelli, Stefano; Peruffo, Antonella; Patarnello, Tomaso; Cozzi, Bruno; Negrisolo, Enrico

    2016-01-01

    The mitochondrion is the power plant of the eukaryotic cell, and tRNAs are the fundamental components of its translational machinery. In the present paper, the evolution of mitochondrial tRNAs was investigated in the Cetacea, a clade of Cetartiodactyla that retuned to water and thus had to adapt its metabolism to a different medium than that of its mainland ancestors. Our analysis focussed on identifying the factors that influenced the evolution of Cetacea tRNA double-helix elements, which play a pivotal role in the formation of the secondary and tertiary structures of each tRNA and consequently manipulate the whole translation machinery of the mitochondrion. Our analyses showed that the substitution pathways in the stems of different tRNAs were influenced by various factors, determining a molecular evolution that was unique to each of the 22 tRNAs. Our data suggested that the composition, AT-skew, and GC-skew of the tRNA stems were the main factors influencing the substitution process. In particular, the range of variation and the fluctuation of these parameters affected the fate of single tRNAs. Strong heterogeneity was observed among the different species of Cetacea. Finally, it appears that the evolution of mitochondrial tRNAs was also shaped by the environments in which the Cetacean taxa differentiated. This latter effect was particularly evident in toothed whales that either live in freshwater or are deep divers. PMID:27336480

  15. Genetic constraints on adaptive evolution in principle and in practice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Weinreich, Daniel

    2014-03-01

    Geneticists have long recognized that pairs of mutations often produce surprising effects on the organism, given their effects in isolation. Such mutational interactions are called epistasis. Importantly, epistasis among mutations influencing an organism's survival or reproductive success can constrain the temporal order in which mutations will be favored by natural selection. After exploring these theoretical considerations more fully, we will demonstrate substantial epistatic constraint on the evolution of an enzyme that confers bacterial antibiotic resistance. Such epistatically induced constraints turn out to be rather common in enzyme evolution, and we will briefly discuss recent work that seeks to explicate its mechanistic basis using methods of molecular and structural biology. Finally we observe that the epistatic interaction between two mutations itself often varies with genetic context, implying the existence of higher-order interactions. We present a computational framework for assessing magnitude of epistatic interactions of all orders, and show that non-negligible epistatic interactions of all orders are common in a diverse set of biological systems. Work supported by NIGMS Award R01GM095728 and NSF Emerging Frontiers Award 1038657

  16. Toxin-Resistant Sodium Channels: Parallel Adaptive Evolution across a Complete Gene Family

    PubMed Central

    Hillis, David M.; Lu, Ying; Kyle, John W.; Fozzard, Harry A.; Zakon, Harold H.

    2008-01-01

    Approximately 75% of vertebrate proteins belong to protein families encoded by multiple evolutionarily related genes, a pattern that emerged as a result of gene and genome duplications over the course of vertebrate evolution. In families of genes with similar or related functions, adaptation to a strong selective agent should involve multiple adaptive changes across the entire gene family. However, we know of no evolutionary studies that have explicitly addressed this point. Here, we show how 4 taxonomically diverse species of pufferfishes (Tetraodontidae) each evolved resistance to the guanidinium toxins tetrodotoxin (TTX) and saxitoxin (STX) via parallel amino acid replacements across all 8 sodium channels present in teleost fish genomes. This resulted in diverse suites of coexisting sodium channel types that all confer varying degrees of toxin resistance, yet show remarkable convergence among genes and phylogenetically diverse species. Using site-directed mutagenesis and expression of a vertebrate sodium channel, we also demonstrate that resistance to TTX/STX is enhanced up to 15-fold by single, frequently observed replacements at 2 sites that have not previously been implicated in toxin binding but show similar or identical replacements in pufferfishes and in distantly related vertebrate and nonvertebrate animals. This study presents an example of natural selection acting upon a complete gene family, repeatedly arriving at a diverse but limited number of adaptive changes within the same genome. To be maximally informative, we suggest that future studies of molecular adaptation should consider all functionally similar paralogs of the affected gene family. PMID:18258611

  17. Transcriptome analyses provide insights into the phylogeny and adaptive evolution of the mangrove fern genus Acrostichum

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Zhang; He, Ziwen; Xu, Shaohua; Li, Xinnian; Guo, Wuxia; Yang, Yuchen; Zhong, Cairong; Zhou, Renchao; Shi, Suhua

    2016-01-01

    The mangrove fern genus Acrostichum grows in the extremely unstable marine intertidal zone under harsh conditions, such as high salt concentrations, tidal rhythms and long-term climate changes. To explore the phylogenetic relationships and molecular mechanisms underlying adaptations in this genus, we sequenced the transcriptomes of two species of Acrostichum, A. aureum and A. speciosum, as well as a species in the sister genus, Ceratopteris thalictroides. We obtained 47,517, 36,420 and 60,823 unigenes for the three ferns, of which 24.39–45.63% were annotated using public databases. The estimated divergence time revealed that Acrostichum adapted to the coastal region during the late Cretaceous, whereas the two mangrove ferns from the Indo West-Pacific (IWP) area diverged more recently. Two methods (the modified branch-site model and the Kh method) were used to identify several positively selected genes, which may contribute to differential adaptation of the two Acrostichum species to different light and salt conditions. Our study provides abundant transcriptome data and new insights into the evolution and adaptations of mangrove ferns in the inhospitable intertidal zone. PMID:27782130

  18. A half-century after the molecular clock: new dimensions of molecular evolution

    PubMed Central

    Koonin, Eugene V

    2012-01-01

    The EMBO workshop on ‘Evolution in the Time of Genomics' took place in May 2012 in the magnificent sixteenth century Palazzo Franchetti near Ponte dell'Accademia in Venice. The meeting focused on phenomena that are not part of the traditional narrative of molecular evolution and which might signal a paradigm shift in the field. PMID:22791022

  19. A half-century after the molecular clock: new dimensions of molecular evolution.

    PubMed

    Koonin, Eugene V

    2012-08-01

    The EMBO workshop on 'Evolution in the Time of Genomics' took place in May 2012 in the magnificent sixteenth century Palazzo Franchetti near Ponte dell'Accademia in Venice. The meeting focused on phenomena that are not part of the traditional narrative of molecular evolution and which might signal a paradigm shift in the field.

  20. Molecular and ecological signs of mitochondrial adaptation: consequences for introgression?

    PubMed

    Boratyński, Z; Melo-Ferreira, J; Alves, P C; Berto, S; Koskela, E; Pentikäinen, O T; Tarroso, P; Ylilauri, M; Mappes, T

    2014-10-01

    The evolution of the mitochondrial genome and its potential adaptive impact still generates vital debates. Even if mitochondria have a crucial functional role, as they are the main cellular energy suppliers, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) introgression is common in nature, introducing variation in populations upon which selection may act. Here we evaluated whether the evolution of mtDNA in a rodent species affected by mtDNA introgression is explained by neutral expectations alone. Variation in one mitochondrial and six nuclear markers in Myodes glareolus voles was examined, including populations that show mtDNA introgression from its close relative, Myodes rutilus. In addition, we modelled protein structures of the mtDNA marker (cytochrome b) and estimated the environmental envelopes of mitotypes. We found that massive mtDNA introgression occurred without any trace of introgression in the analysed nuclear genes. The results show that the native glareolus mtDNA evolved under past positive selection, suggesting that mtDNA in this system has selective relevance. The environmental models indicate that the rutilus mitotype inhabits colder and drier habitats than the glareolus one that can result from local adaptation or from the geographic context of introgression. Finally, homology models of the cytochrome b protein revealed a substitution in rutilus mtDNA in the vicinity of the catalytic fraction, suggesting that differences between mitotypes may result in functional changes. These results suggest that the evolution of mtDNA in Myodes may have functional, ecological and adaptive significance. This work opens perspective onto future experimental tests of the role of natural selection in mtDNA introgression in this system.

  1. Molecular and ecological signs of mitochondrial adaptation: consequences for introgression?

    PubMed Central

    Boratyński, Z; Melo-Ferreira, J; Alves, P C; Berto, S; Koskela, E; Pentikäinen, O T; Tarroso, P; Ylilauri, M; Mappes, T

    2014-01-01

    The evolution of the mitochondrial genome and its potential adaptive impact still generates vital debates. Even if mitochondria have a crucial functional role, as they are the main cellular energy suppliers, mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) introgression is common in nature, introducing variation in populations upon which selection may act. Here we evaluated whether the evolution of mtDNA in a rodent species affected by mtDNA introgression is explained by neutral expectations alone. Variation in one mitochondrial and six nuclear markers in Myodes glareolus voles was examined, including populations that show mtDNA introgression from its close relative, Myodes rutilus. In addition, we modelled protein structures of the mtDNA marker (cytochrome b) and estimated the environmental envelopes of mitotypes. We found that massive mtDNA introgression occurred without any trace of introgression in the analysed nuclear genes. The results show that the native glareolus mtDNA evolved under past positive selection, suggesting that mtDNA in this system has selective relevance. The environmental models indicate that the rutilus mitotype inhabits colder and drier habitats than the glareolus one that can result from local adaptation or from the geographic context of introgression. Finally, homology models of the cytochrome b protein revealed a substitution in rutilus mtDNA in the vicinity of the catalytic fraction, suggesting that differences between mitotypes may result in functional changes. These results suggest that the evolution of mtDNA in Myodes may have functional, ecological and adaptive significance. This work opens perspective onto future experimental tests of the role of natural selection in mtDNA introgression in this system. PMID:24690754

  2. Slow molecular evolution in an ancient asexual ostracod

    PubMed Central

    n, I. Sch; Butlin, R. K.; Griffiths, H. I.; Martens, K.

    1998-01-01

    Genetic variability of the non-marine ostracod species Darwinula stevensoni was estimated by sequencing part of the nuclear and the mitochondrial genome. As Darwinulidae are believed to be ancient asexuals, accumulation of mutations should have occurred, both between alleles within lineages and between lineages, during the millions of years of parthenogenetic reproduction. However, our sequence data show the opposite: no variability in the nuclear ITS1 region was observed within or among individuals of D. stevensoni, despite sampling a geographical range from Finland to South Africa. Lack of allelic divergence might be explained by concerted evolution of rDNA repeats. Homogeneity among individuals may be caused either by slow molecular evolution in ITS1 or by a recent selective sweep. Variability of mitochondrial cytochrome oxidase (COI) was similar to intraspecific levels in other invertebrates, thus weakening the latter hypothesis. Calibrating interspecific, genetic divergences among D. stevensoni and other Darwinulidae using their fossil record enabled us to estimate rates of molecular evolution. Both COI and ITS1 evolve half as fast, at most, in darwinulids as in other invertebrates, and molecular evolution has significantly slowed down in ITS1 of D. stevensoni relative to other darwinulids. A reduced ITS1 mutation rate might explain this inconsistency between nuclear and mitochondrial evolution in D. stevensoni.

  3. Molecular evolution of GPCRs: Ghrelin/ghrelin receptors.

    PubMed

    Kaiya, Hiroyuki; Kangawa, Kenji; Miyazato, Mikiya

    2014-06-01

    After the discovery in 1996 of the GH secretagogue-receptor type-1a (GHS-R1a) as an orphan G-protein coupled receptor, many research groups attempted to identify the endogenous ligand. Finally, Kojima and colleagues successfully isolated the peptide ligand from rat stomach extracts, determined its structure, and named it ghrelin. The GHS-R1a is now accepted to be the ghrelin receptor. The existence of the ghrelin system has been demonstrated in many animal classes through biochemical and molecular biological strategies as well as through genome projects. Our work, focused on identifying the ghrelin receptor and its ligand ghrelin in laboratory animals, particularly nonmammalian vertebrates, has provided new insights into the molecular evolution of the ghrelin receptor. In mammals, it is assumed that the ghrelin receptor evolution is in line with the plate tectonics theory. In contrast, the evolution of the ghrelin receptor in nonmammalian vertebrates differs from that of mammals: multiplicity of the ghrelin receptor isoforms is observed in nonmammalian vertebrates only. This multiplicity is due to genome duplication and polyploidization events that particularly occurred in Teleostei. Furthermore, it is likely that the evolution of the ghrelin receptor is distinct from that of its ligand, ghrelin, because only one ghrelin isoform has been detected in all species examined so far. In this review, we summarize current knowledge related to the molecular evolution of the ghrelin receptor in mammalian and nonmammalian vertebrates. PMID:24353285

  4. The Jukes-Cantor Model of Molecular Evolution

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Erickson, Keith

    2010-01-01

    The material in this module introduces students to some of the mathematical tools used to examine molecular evolution. This topic is standard fare in many mathematical biology or bioinformatics classes, but could also be suitable for classes in linear algebra or probability. While coursework in matrix algebra, Markov processes, Monte Carlo…

  5. Molecular evolution of hisB genes.

    PubMed

    Brilli, Matteo; Fani, Renato

    2004-02-01

    The sixth and eighth steps of histidine biosynthesis are catalyzed by an imidazole glycerol-phosphate (IGP) dehydratase (EC 4.2.1.19) and by a histidinol-phosphate (HOL-P) phosphatase (EC 3.1.3.15), respectively. In the enterobacteria, in Campylobacter jejuni and in Xylella/Xanthomonas the two activities are associated with a single bifunctional polypeptide encoded by hisB. On the other hand, in Archaea, Eucarya, and most Bacteria the two activities are encoded by two separate genes. In this work we report a comparative analysis of the amino acid sequence of all the available HisB proteins, which allowed us to depict a likely evolutionary pathway leading to the present-day bifunctional hisB gene. According to the model that we propose, the bifunctional hisB gene is the result of a fusion event between two independent cistrons joined by domain-shuffling. The fusion event occurred recently in evolution, very likely in the proteobacterial lineage after the separation of the gamma- and the beta-subdivisions. Data obtained in this work established that a paralogous duplication event of an ancestral DDDD phosphatase encoding gene originated both the HOL-P phosphatase moiety of the E. coli hisB gene and the gmhB gene coding for a DDDD phosphatase, which is involved in the biosynthesis of a precursor of the inner core of the outer membrane lipopolysaccharides (LPS).

  6. Cellular and molecular aspects of plant adaptation to microgravity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kordyum, Elizabeth; Kozeko, Liudmyla

    2016-07-01

    Elucidation of the range and mechanisms of the biological effects of microgravity is one of the urgent fundamental tasks of space and gravitational biology. The absence of forbidding on plant growth and development in orbital flight allows studying different aspects of plant adaptation to this factor that is directly connected with development of the technologies of bioregenerative life-support systems. Microgravity belongs to the environmental factors which cause adaptive reactions at the cellular and molecular levels in the range of physiological responses in the framework of genetically determined program of ontogenesis. It is known that cells of a multicellular organism not only take part in reactions of the organism but also carry out processes that maintain their integrity. In light of these principles, the problem of identification of biochemical, physiological and structural patterns that can have adaptive significance at the cellular and molecular levels in real and simulated microgravity is considered. It is pointed that plant cell responses in microgravity and under clinorotation vary according to growth phase, physiological state, and taxonomic position of the object. At the same time, the responses have, to some degree, a similar character reflecting the changes in the cell organelle functional load. The maintenance of the plasmalemma fluidity at the certain level, an activation of both the antioxidant system and expression of HSP genes, especially HSP70, under increasing reactive oxygen species, lipid peroxidation intensity and alteration in protein homeostasis, are a strategic paradigm of rapid (primary) cell adaptation to microgravity. In this sense, biological membranes, especially plasmalemma, and their properties and functions may be considered as the most sensitive indicators of the influence of gravity or altered gravity on a cell. The plasmalemma lipid bilayer is a border between the cell internal content and environment, so it is a mediator

  7. Molecular clocks and the early evolution of metazoan nervous systems.

    PubMed

    Wray, Gregory A

    2015-12-19

    The timing of early animal evolution remains poorly resolved, yet remains critical for understanding nervous system evolution. Methods for estimating divergence times from sequence data have improved considerably, providing a more refined understanding of key divergences. The best molecular estimates point to the origin of metazoans and bilaterians tens to hundreds of millions of years earlier than their first appearances in the fossil record. Both the molecular and fossil records are compatible, however, with the possibility of tiny, unskeletonized, low energy budget animals during the Proterozoic that had planktonic, benthic, or meiofaunal lifestyles. Such animals would likely have had relatively simple nervous systems equipped primarily to detect food, avoid inhospitable environments and locate mates. The appearance of the first macropredators during the Cambrian would have changed the selective landscape dramatically, likely driving the evolution of complex sense organs, sophisticated sensory processing systems, and diverse effector systems involved in capturing prey and avoiding predation. PMID:26554040

  8. Molecular clocks and the early evolution of metazoan nervous systems.

    PubMed

    Wray, Gregory A

    2015-12-19

    The timing of early animal evolution remains poorly resolved, yet remains critical for understanding nervous system evolution. Methods for estimating divergence times from sequence data have improved considerably, providing a more refined understanding of key divergences. The best molecular estimates point to the origin of metazoans and bilaterians tens to hundreds of millions of years earlier than their first appearances in the fossil record. Both the molecular and fossil records are compatible, however, with the possibility of tiny, unskeletonized, low energy budget animals during the Proterozoic that had planktonic, benthic, or meiofaunal lifestyles. Such animals would likely have had relatively simple nervous systems equipped primarily to detect food, avoid inhospitable environments and locate mates. The appearance of the first macropredators during the Cambrian would have changed the selective landscape dramatically, likely driving the evolution of complex sense organs, sophisticated sensory processing systems, and diverse effector systems involved in capturing prey and avoiding predation.

  9. [Recent progress in protist virology--molecular ecology, taxonomy, molecular evolution].

    PubMed

    Nagasaki, Keizo; Tomaru, Yuji

    2009-06-01

    At present, more than 40 protist-infecting viruses have been isolated and characterized. From the viewpoints of molecular ecology, taxomony and molecular evolution, several new discoveries were made within the last five years. In this minireview, three topics of interest on protist-infecting viruses are introduced: 1) molecular ecological relationships between a bloom-forming dinoflagellate Heterocapsa circularisquama and its ssRNA virus (HcRNAV); 2) findings of new ssRNA- and ssDNA-virus groups infecting diatoms; 3) establishment of a hypothesis concerning the evolution of picornaviruses. The potential of aquatic virus studies is far-reaching and inestimable.

  10. Molecular evolution of the gamma-Herpesvirinae.

    PubMed Central

    McGeoch, D J

    2001-01-01

    Genomic sequences available for members of the gamma-Herpesvirinae allow analysis of many aspects of the group's evolution. This paper examines four topics: (i) the phylogeny of the group; (ii) the histories of gamma-herpesvirus-specific genes; (iii) genomic variation of human herpesvirus 8 (HHV-8); and (iv) the relationship between Epstein-Barr virus types 1 and 2 (EBV-1 and EBV-2). A phylogenetic tree based on eight conserved genes has been constructed for eight gamma-herpesviruses and extended to 14 species with smaller gene sets. This gave a generally robust assignment of evolutionary relationships, with the exception of murine herpesvirus 4 (MHV-4), which could not be placed unambiguously on the tree and which has evidently experienced an unusually high rate of genomic change. The gamma-herpesviruses possess a variable complement of genes with cellular homologues. In the clearest cases these virus genes were shown to have originated from host genome lineages in the distant past. HHV-8 possesses at its left genomic terminus a highly diverse gene (K1) and at its right terminus a gene (K15) having two diverged alleles. It was proposed that the high diversity of K1 results from a positive selection on K1 and a hitchhiking effect that reduces diversity elsewhere in the genome. EBV-1 and EBV-2 differ in their alleles of the EBNA-2, EBNA-3A, EBNA-3B and EBNA-3C genes. It was suggested that EBV-1 and EBV-2 may recombine in mixed infections so that their sequences outside these genes remain homogeneous. Models for genesis of the types, by recombination between diverged parents or by local divergence from a single lineage, both present difficulties. PMID:11313003

  11. [Insulin resistance as a mechanism of adaptation during human evolution].

    PubMed

    Ricart, W; Fernández-Real, J M

    2010-10-01

    The recent application of concepts of evolution to human disease is proving useful to understand certain pathophysiological mechanisms of different entities that span genomic alterations of immunity, respiratory and hormone function, and the circulatory and neural systems. However, effort has concentrated on explaining the keys to adaptation that define human metabolism and, since the early 1960s, several theories have been developed. This article reviews some of the hypotheses postulated in recent years on the potential benefit of insulin resistance and discusses the most recent knowledge. The concept of the thrifty gene seems to have been definitively refuted by current knowledge. The current paradigm describes an interaction between the metabolic and the immune systems resulting from their coevolution, promoted by evolutionary pressures triggered by fasting, infection and intake of different foods. The activation and regulation of these ancient mechanisms in integrated and interdependent areas defines insulin resistance as a survival strategy that is critical during fasting and in the fight against infection. The relationship with some components of the diet and, particularly, with the symbiotic intestinal microflora points to new paradigms in understanding the pathophysiology of obesity, metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes mellitus.

  12. Drosophila Adaptation to Viral Infection through Defensive Symbiont Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Faria, Vitor G.; Magalhães, Sara; Paulo, Tânia F.; Nolte, Viola; Schlötterer, Christian

    2016-01-01

    Microbial symbionts can modulate host interactions with biotic and abiotic factors. Such interactions may affect the evolutionary trajectories of both host and symbiont. Wolbachia protects Drosophila melanogaster against several viral infections and the strength of the protection varies between variants of this endosymbiont. Since Wolbachia is maternally transmitted, its fitness depends on the fitness of its host. Therefore, Wolbachia populations may be under selection when Drosophila is subjected to viral infection. Here we show that in D. melanogaster populations selected for increased survival upon infection with Drosophila C virus there is a strong selection coefficient for specific Wolbachia variants, leading to their fixation. Flies carrying these selected Wolbachia variants have higher survival and fertility upon viral infection when compared to flies with the other variants. These findings demonstrate how the interaction of a host with pathogens shapes the genetic composition of symbiont populations. Furthermore, host adaptation can result from the evolution of its symbionts, with host and symbiont functioning as a single evolutionary unit. PMID:27684942

  13. [Insulin resistance as a mechanism of adaptation during human evolution].

    PubMed

    Ricart, W; Fernández-Real, J M

    2010-10-01

    The recent application of concepts of evolution to human disease is proving useful to understand certain pathophysiological mechanisms of different entities that span genomic alterations of immunity, respiratory and hormone function, and the circulatory and neural systems. However, effort has concentrated on explaining the keys to adaptation that define human metabolism and, since the early 1960s, several theories have been developed. This article reviews some of the hypotheses postulated in recent years on the potential benefit of insulin resistance and discusses the most recent knowledge. The concept of the thrifty gene seems to have been definitively refuted by current knowledge. The current paradigm describes an interaction between the metabolic and the immune systems resulting from their coevolution, promoted by evolutionary pressures triggered by fasting, infection and intake of different foods. The activation and regulation of these ancient mechanisms in integrated and interdependent areas defines insulin resistance as a survival strategy that is critical during fasting and in the fight against infection. The relationship with some components of the diet and, particularly, with the symbiotic intestinal microflora points to new paradigms in understanding the pathophysiology of obesity, metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes mellitus. PMID:20675202

  14. Evolution of an antifreeze protein by neofunctionalization under escape from adaptive conflict.

    PubMed

    Deng, Cheng; Cheng, C-H Christina; Ye, Hua; He, Ximiao; Chen, Liangbiao

    2010-12-14

    The evolutionary model escape from adaptive conflict (EAC) posits that adaptive conflict between the old and an emerging new function within a single gene could drive the fixation of gene duplication, where each duplicate can freely optimize one of the functions. Although EAC has been suggested as a common process in functional evolution, definitive cases of neofunctionalization under EAC are lacking, and the molecular mechanisms leading to functional innovation are not well-understood. We report here clear experimental evidence for EAC-driven evolution of type III antifreeze protein gene from an old sialic acid synthase (SAS) gene in an Antarctic zoarcid fish. We found that an SAS gene, having both sialic acid synthase and rudimentary ice-binding activities, became duplicated. In one duplicate, the N-terminal SAS domain was deleted and replaced with a nascent signal peptide, removing pleiotropic structural conflict between SAS and ice-binding functions and allowing rapid optimization of the C-terminal domain to become a secreted protein capable of noncolligative freezing-point depression. This study reveals how minor functionalities in an old gene can be transformed into a distinct survival protein and provides insights into how gene duplicates facing presumed identical selection and mutation pressures at birth could take divergent evolutionary paths. PMID:21115821

  15. Evolution of time-keeping mechanisms: early emergence and adaptation to photoperiod.

    PubMed

    Hut, R A; Beersma, D G M

    2011-07-27

    Virtually all species have developed cellular oscillations and mechanisms that synchronize these cellular oscillations to environmental cycles. Such environmental cycles in biotic (e.g. food availability and predation risk) or abiotic (e.g. temperature and light) factors may occur on a daily, annual or tidal time scale. Internal timing mechanisms may facilitate behavioural or physiological adaptation to such changes in environmental conditions. These timing mechanisms commonly involve an internal molecular oscillator (a 'clock') that is synchronized ('entrained') to the environmental cycle by receptor mechanisms responding to relevant environmental signals ('Zeitgeber', i.e. German for time-giver). To understand the evolution of such timing mechanisms, we have to understand the mechanisms leading to selective advantage. Although major advances have been made in our understanding of the physiological and molecular mechanisms driving internal cycles (proximate questions), studies identifying mechanisms of natural selection on clock systems (ultimate questions) are rather limited. Here, we discuss the selective advantage of a circadian system and how its adaptation to day length variation may have a functional role in optimizing seasonal timing. We discuss various cases where selective advantages of circadian timing mechanisms have been shown and cases where temporarily loss of circadian timing may cause selective advantage. We suggest an explanation for why a circadian timing system has emerged in primitive life forms like cyanobacteria and we evaluate a possible molecular mechanism that enabled these bacteria to adapt to seasonal variation in day length. We further discuss how the role of the circadian system in photoperiodic time measurement may explain differential selection pressures on circadian period when species are exposed to changing climatic conditions (e.g. global warming) or when they expand their geographical range to different latitudes or altitudes.

  16. Epigenetics in adaptive evolution and development: the interplay between evolving species and epigenetic mechanisms: extract from Trygve Tollefsbol (ed.) (2011) Handbook of epigenetics--the new molecular and medical genetics. Chapter 26. Amsterdam, USA: Elsevier, pp. 423-446.

    PubMed

    House, Simon H

    2013-04-01

    By comparing epigenetics of current species with fossil records across evolutionary transitions, we can gauge the moment of emergence of some novel mechanisms in evolution, and recognize that epigenetic mechanisms have a bearing on mutation. Understanding the complexity and changeability of these mechanisms, as well as the changes they can effect, is both fascinating and of vital practical benefit. Our most serious pandemics of so-called 'non-communicable' diseases - mental and cardiovascular disorders, obesity and diabetes, rooted in the 'metabolic syndrome' - are evidently related to effects on our evolutionary mechanisms of agricultural and food industrialization, modern lifestyle and diet. Pollution affects us directly as well as indirectly by its destruction of ecologically essential biosystems. Evidently such powerful conditions of existence have epigenetic effects on both our health and our continuing evolution. Such effects are most profound during reproductive and developmental processes, when levels of hormones, as affected by stress particularly, may be due to modern cultures in childbearing such as excessive intervention, separation, maternal distress and disruption of bonding. Mechanisms of genomic imprinting seem likely to throw light on problems in assisted reproductive technology, among other transgenerational effects.

  17. Epigenetics in adaptive evolution and development: the interplay between evolving species and epigenetic mechanisms: extract from Trygve Tollefsbol (ed.) (2011) Handbook of epigenetics--the new molecular and medical genetics. Chapter 26. Amsterdam, USA: Elsevier, pp. 423-446.

    PubMed

    House, Simon H

    2013-04-01

    By comparing epigenetics of current species with fossil records across evolutionary transitions, we can gauge the moment of emergence of some novel mechanisms in evolution, and recognize that epigenetic mechanisms have a bearing on mutation. Understanding the complexity and changeability of these mechanisms, as well as the changes they can effect, is both fascinating and of vital practical benefit. Our most serious pandemics of so-called 'non-communicable' diseases - mental and cardiovascular disorders, obesity and diabetes, rooted in the 'metabolic syndrome' - are evidently related to effects on our evolutionary mechanisms of agricultural and food industrialization, modern lifestyle and diet. Pollution affects us directly as well as indirectly by its destruction of ecologically essential biosystems. Evidently such powerful conditions of existence have epigenetic effects on both our health and our continuing evolution. Such effects are most profound during reproductive and developmental processes, when levels of hormones, as affected by stress particularly, may be due to modern cultures in childbearing such as excessive intervention, separation, maternal distress and disruption of bonding. Mechanisms of genomic imprinting seem likely to throw light on problems in assisted reproductive technology, among other transgenerational effects. PMID:25178658

  18. Cellular and molecular aspects of plant adaptation to microgravity

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kordyum, Elizabeth; Kozeko, Liudmyla

    2016-07-01

    Elucidation of the range and mechanisms of the biological effects of microgravity is one of the urgent fundamental tasks of space and gravitational biology. The absence of forbidding on plant growth and development in orbital flight allows studying different aspects of plant adaptation to this factor that is directly connected with development of the technologies of bioregenerative life-support systems. Microgravity belongs to the environmental factors which cause adaptive reactions at the cellular and molecular levels in the range of physiological responses in the framework of genetically determined program of ontogenesis. It is known that cells of a multicellular organism not only take part in reactions of the organism but also carry out processes that maintain their integrity. In light of these principles, the problem of identification of biochemical, physiological and structural patterns that can have adaptive significance at the cellular and molecular levels in real and simulated microgravity is considered. It is pointed that plant cell responses in microgravity and under clinorotation vary according to growth phase, physiological state, and taxonomic position of the object. At the same time, the responses have, to some degree, a similar character reflecting the changes in the cell organelle functional load. The maintenance of the plasmalemma fluidity at the certain level, an activation of both the antioxidant system and expression of HSP genes, especially HSP70, under increasing reactive oxygen species, lipid peroxidation intensity and alteration in protein homeostasis, are a strategic paradigm of rapid (primary) cell adaptation to microgravity. In this sense, biological membranes, especially plasmalemma, and their properties and functions may be considered as the most sensitive indicators of the influence of gravity or altered gravity on a cell. The plasmalemma lipid bilayer is a border between the cell internal content and environment, so it is a mediator

  19. DNA Re-EvolutioN: a game for learning molecular genetics and evolution.

    PubMed

    Miralles, Laura; Moran, Paloma; Dopico, Eduardo; Garcia-Vazquez, Eva

    2013-01-01

    Evolution is a main concept in biology, but not many students understand how it works. In this article we introduce the game DNA Re-EvolutioN as an active learning tool that uses genetic concepts (DNA structure, transcription and translation, mutations, natural selection, etc.) as playing rules. Students will learn about molecular evolution while playing a game that mixes up theory and entertainment. The game can be easily adapted to different educational levels. The main goal of this play is to arrive at the end of the game with the longest protein. Students play with pawns and dices, a board containing hypothetical events (mutations, selection) that happen to molecules, "Evolution cards" with indications for DNA mutations, prototypes of a DNA and a mRNA chain with colored "nucleotides" (plasticine balls), and small pieces simulating t-RNA with aminoacids that will serve to construct a "protein" based on the DNA chain. Students will understand how changes in DNA affect the final protein product and may be subjected to positive or negative selection, using a didactic tool funnier than classical theory lectures and easier than molecular laboratory experiments: a flexible and feasible game to learn and enjoy molecular evolution at no-cost. The game was tested by majors and non-majors in genetics from 13 different countries and evaluated with pre- and post-tests obtaining very positive results. PMID:24259334

  20. Social parasitism and the molecular basis of phenotypic evolution.

    PubMed

    Cini, Alessandro; Patalano, Solenn; Segonds-Pichon, Anne; Busby, George B J; Cervo, Rita; Sumner, Seirian

    2015-01-01

    Contrasting phenotypes arise from similar genomes through a combination of losses, gains, co-option and modifications of inherited genomic material. Understanding the molecular basis of this phenotypic diversity is a fundamental challenge in modern evolutionary biology. Comparisons of the genes and their expression patterns underlying traits in closely related species offer an unrivaled opportunity to evaluate the extent to which genomic material is reorganized to produce novel traits. Advances in molecular methods now allow us to dissect the molecular machinery underlying phenotypic diversity in almost any organism, from single-celled entities to the most complex vertebrates. Here we discuss how comparisons of social parasites and their free-living hosts may provide unique insights into the molecular basis of phenotypic evolution. Social parasites evolve from a eusocial ancestor and are specialized to exploit the socially acquired resources of their closely-related eusocial host. Molecular comparisons of such species pairs can reveal how genomic material is re-organized in the loss of ancestral traits (i.e., of free-living traits in the parasites) and the gain of new ones (i.e., specialist traits required for a parasitic lifestyle). We define hypotheses on the molecular basis of phenotypes in the evolution of social parasitism and discuss their wider application in our understanding of the molecular basis of phenotypic diversity within the theoretical framework of phenotypic plasticity and shifting reaction norms. Currently there are no data available to test these hypotheses, and so we also provide some proof of concept data using the paper wasp social parasite/host system (Polistes sulcifer-Polistes dominula). This conceptual framework and first empirical data provide a spring-board for directing future genomic analyses on exploiting social parasites as a route to understanding the evolution of phenotypic specialization.

  1. Social parasitism and the molecular basis of phenotypic evolution

    PubMed Central

    Cini, Alessandro; Patalano, Solenn; Segonds-Pichon, Anne; Busby, George B. J.; Cervo, Rita; Sumner, Seirian

    2015-01-01

    Contrasting phenotypes arise from similar genomes through a combination of losses, gains, co-option and modifications of inherited genomic material. Understanding the molecular basis of this phenotypic diversity is a fundamental challenge in modern evolutionary biology. Comparisons of the genes and their expression patterns underlying traits in closely related species offer an unrivaled opportunity to evaluate the extent to which genomic material is reorganized to produce novel traits. Advances in molecular methods now allow us to dissect the molecular machinery underlying phenotypic diversity in almost any organism, from single-celled entities to the most complex vertebrates. Here we discuss how comparisons of social parasites and their free-living hosts may provide unique insights into the molecular basis of phenotypic evolution. Social parasites evolve from a eusocial ancestor and are specialized to exploit the socially acquired resources of their closely-related eusocial host. Molecular comparisons of such species pairs can reveal how genomic material is re-organized in the loss of ancestral traits (i.e., of free-living traits in the parasites) and the gain of new ones (i.e., specialist traits required for a parasitic lifestyle). We define hypotheses on the molecular basis of phenotypes in the evolution of social parasitism and discuss their wider application in our understanding of the molecular basis of phenotypic diversity within the theoretical framework of phenotypic plasticity and shifting reaction norms. Currently there are no data available to test these hypotheses, and so we also provide some proof of concept data using the paper wasp social parasite/host system (Polistes sulcifer—Polistes dominula). This conceptual framework and first empirical data provide a spring-board for directing future genomic analyses on exploiting social parasites as a route to understanding the evolution of phenotypic specialization. PMID:25741361

  2. A New Take on John Maynard Smith's Concept of Protein Space for Understanding Molecular Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Hartl, Daniel L.

    2016-01-01

    Much of the public lacks a proper understanding of Darwinian evolution, a problem that can be addressed with new learning and teaching approaches to be implemented both inside the classroom and in less formal settings. Few analogies have been as successful in communicating the basics of molecular evolution as John Maynard Smith’s protein space analogy (1970), in which he compared protein evolution to the transition between the terms WORD and GENE, changing one letter at a time to yield a different, meaningful word (in his example, the preferred path was WORD → WORE → GORE → GONE → GENE). Using freely available computer science tools (Google Books Ngram Viewer), we offer an update to Maynard Smith’s analogy and explain how it might be developed into an exploratory and pedagogical device for understanding the basics of molecular evolution and, more specifically, the adaptive landscape concept. We explain how the device works through several examples and provide resources that might facilitate its use in multiple settings, ranging from public engagement activities to formal instruction in evolution, population genetics, and computational biology. PMID:27736867

  3. Widespread convergence in toxin resistance by predictable molecular evolution.

    PubMed

    Ujvari, Beata; Casewell, Nicholas R; Sunagar, Kartik; Arbuckle, Kevin; Wüster, Wolfgang; Lo, Nathan; O'Meally, Denis; Beckmann, Christa; King, Glenn F; Deplazes, Evelyne; Madsen, Thomas

    2015-09-22

    The question about whether evolution is unpredictable and stochastic or intermittently constrained along predictable pathways is the subject of a fundamental debate in biology, in which understanding convergent evolution plays a central role. At the molecular level, documented examples of convergence are rare and limited to occurring within specific taxonomic groups. Here we provide evidence of constrained convergent molecular evolution across the metazoan tree of life. We show that resistance to toxic cardiac glycosides produced by plants and bufonid toads is mediated by similar molecular changes to the sodium-potassium-pump (Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase) in insects, amphibians, reptiles, and mammals. In toad-feeding reptiles, resistance is conferred by two point mutations that have evolved convergently on four occasions, whereas evidence of a molecular reversal back to the susceptible state in varanid lizards migrating to toad-free areas suggests that toxin resistance is maladaptive in the absence of selection. Importantly, resistance in all taxa is mediated by replacements of 2 of the 12 amino acids comprising the Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase H1-H2 extracellular domain that constitutes a core part of the cardiac glycoside binding site. We provide mechanistic insight into the basis of resistance by showing that these alterations perturb the interaction between the cardiac glycoside bufalin and the Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase. Thus, similar selection pressures have resulted in convergent evolution of the same molecular solution across the breadth of the animal kingdom, demonstrating how a scarcity of possible solutions to a selective challenge can lead to highly predictable evolutionary responses. PMID:26372961

  4. Widespread convergence in toxin resistance by predictable molecular evolution

    PubMed Central

    Ujvari, Beata; Casewell, Nicholas R.; Sunagar, Kartik; Arbuckle, Kevin; Wüster, Wolfgang; Lo, Nathan; O’Meally, Denis; Beckmann, Christa; King, Glenn F.; Deplazes, Evelyne; Madsen, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    The question about whether evolution is unpredictable and stochastic or intermittently constrained along predictable pathways is the subject of a fundamental debate in biology, in which understanding convergent evolution plays a central role. At the molecular level, documented examples of convergence are rare and limited to occurring within specific taxonomic groups. Here we provide evidence of constrained convergent molecular evolution across the metazoan tree of life. We show that resistance to toxic cardiac glycosides produced by plants and bufonid toads is mediated by similar molecular changes to the sodium-potassium-pump (Na+/K+-ATPase) in insects, amphibians, reptiles, and mammals. In toad-feeding reptiles, resistance is conferred by two point mutations that have evolved convergently on four occasions, whereas evidence of a molecular reversal back to the susceptible state in varanid lizards migrating to toad-free areas suggests that toxin resistance is maladaptive in the absence of selection. Importantly, resistance in all taxa is mediated by replacements of 2 of the 12 amino acids comprising the Na+/K+-ATPase H1–H2 extracellular domain that constitutes a core part of the cardiac glycoside binding site. We provide mechanistic insight into the basis of resistance by showing that these alterations perturb the interaction between the cardiac glycoside bufalin and the Na+/K+-ATPase. Thus, similar selection pressures have resulted in convergent evolution of the same molecular solution across the breadth of the animal kingdom, demonstrating how a scarcity of possible solutions to a selective challenge can lead to highly predictable evolutionary responses. PMID:26372961

  5. Influenza A Virus Polymerase Is a Site for Adaptive Changes during Experimental Evolution in Bat Cells

    PubMed Central

    Poole, Daniel S.; Yú, Shuǐqìng; Caì, Yíngyún; Dinis, Jorge M.; Müller, Marcel A.; Jordan, Ingo; Friedrich, Thomas C.; Kuhn, Jens H.

    2014-01-01

    ABSTRACT The recent identification of highly divergent influenza A viruses in bats revealed a new, geographically dispersed viral reservoir. To investigate the molecular mechanisms of host-restricted viral tropism and the potential for transmission of viruses between humans and bats, we exposed a panel of cell lines from bats of diverse species to a prototypical human-origin influenza A virus. All of the tested bat cell lines were susceptible to influenza A virus infection. Experimental evolution of human and avian-like viruses in bat cells resulted in efficient replication and created highly cytopathic variants. Deep sequencing of adapted human influenza A virus revealed a mutation in the PA polymerase subunit not previously described, M285K. Recombinant virus with the PA M285K mutation completely phenocopied the adapted virus. Adaptation of an avian virus-like virus resulted in the canonical PB2 E627K mutation that is required for efficient replication in other mammals. None of the adaptive mutations occurred in the gene for viral hemagglutinin, a gene that frequently acquires changes to recognize host-specific variations in sialic acid receptors. We showed that human influenza A virus uses canonical sialic acid receptors to infect bat cells, even though bat influenza A viruses do not appear to use these receptors for virus entry. Our results demonstrate that bats are unique hosts that select for both a novel mutation and a well-known adaptive mutation in the viral polymerase to support replication. IMPORTANCE Bats constitute well-known reservoirs for viruses that may be transferred into human populations, sometimes with fatal consequences. Influenza A viruses have recently been identified in bats, dramatically expanding the known host range of this virus. Here we investigated the replication of human influenza A virus in bat cell lines and the barriers that the virus faces in this new host. Human influenza A and B viruses infected cells from geographically and

  6. Evolution: how fruit flies adapt to seasonal stresses.

    PubMed

    Williams, Karen D; Sokolowski, Marla B

    2009-01-27

    Fruit flies inhabit a wide range of latitudes, requiring adaptation to the varying local climates. A recent study reports evidence that the ability of North American flies to endure the winter involves adaptive polymorphism of the couch potato gene.

  7. Contrasting Levels of Molecular Evolution on the Mouse X Chromosome.

    PubMed

    Larson, Erica L; Vanderpool, Dan; Keeble, Sara; Zhou, Meng; Sarver, Brice A J; Smith, Andrew D; Dean, Matthew D; Good, Jeffrey M

    2016-08-01

    The mammalian X chromosome has unusual evolutionary dynamics compared to autosomes. Faster-X evolution of spermatogenic protein-coding genes is known to be most pronounced for genes expressed late in spermatogenesis, but it is unclear if these patterns extend to other forms of molecular divergence. We tested for faster-X evolution in mice spanning three different forms of molecular evolution-divergence in protein sequence, gene expression, and DNA methylation-across different developmental stages of spermatogenesis. We used FACS to isolate individual cell populations and then generated cell-specific transcriptome profiles across different stages of spermatogenesis in two subspecies of house mice (Mus musculus), thereby overcoming a fundamental limitation of previous studies on whole tissues. We found faster-X protein evolution at all stages of spermatogenesis and faster-late protein evolution for both X-linked and autosomal genes. In contrast, there was less expression divergence late in spermatogenesis (slower late) on the X chromosome and for autosomal genes expressed primarily in testis (testis-biased). We argue that slower-late expression divergence reflects strong regulatory constraints imposed during this critical stage of sperm development and that these constraints are particularly acute on the tightly regulated sex chromosomes. We also found slower-X DNA methylation divergence based on genome-wide bisulfite sequencing of sperm from two species of mice (M. musculus and M. spretus), although it is unclear whether slower-X DNA methylation reflects development constraints in sperm or other X-linked phenomena. Our study clarifies key differences in patterns of regulatory and protein evolution across spermatogenesis that are likely to have important consequences for mammalian sex chromosome evolution, male fertility, and speciation.

  8. Multihost experimental evolution of the pathogen Ralstonia solanacearum unveils genes involved in adaptation to plants.

    PubMed

    Guidot, Alice; Jiang, Wei; Ferdy, Jean-Baptiste; Thébaud, Christophe; Barberis, Patrick; Gouzy, Jérôme; Genin, Stéphane

    2014-11-01

    Ralstonia solanacearum, the causal agent of a lethal bacterial wilt plant disease, infects an unusually wide range of hosts. These hosts can further be split into plants where R. solanacearum is known to cause disease (original hosts) and those where this bacterium can grow asymptomatically (distant hosts). Moreover, this pathogen is able to adapt to many plants as supported by field observations reporting emergence of strains with enlarged pathogenic properties. To investigate the genetic bases of host adaptation, we conducted evolution experiments by serial passages of a single clone of the pathogen on three original and two distant hosts over 300 bacterial generations and then analyzed the whole-genome of nine evolved clones. Phenotypic analysis of the evolved clones showed that the pathogen can increase its fitness on both original and distant hosts although the magnitude of fitness increase was greater on distant hosts. Only few genomic modifications were detected in evolved clones compared with the ancestor but parallel evolutionary changes in two genes were observed in independent evolved populations. Independent mutations in the regulatory gene efpR were selected for in three populations evolved on beans, a distant host. Reverse genetic approaches confirmed that these mutations were associated with fitness gain on bean plants. This work provides a first step toward understanding the within-host evolutionary dynamics of R. solanacearum during infection and identifying bacterial genes subjected to in planta selection. The discovery of EfpR as a determinant conditioning host adaptation of the pathogen illustrates how experimental evolution coupled with whole-genome sequencing is a potent tool to identify novel molecular players involved in central life-history traits.

  9. Convergent Molecular Evolution of Genomic Cores in Salmonella enterica and Escherichia coli

    PubMed Central

    Paul, Sandip; Kisiela, Dagmara I.; Linardopoulou, Elena V.

    2012-01-01

    One of the strongest signals of adaptive molecular evolution of proteins is the occurrence of convergent hot spot mutations: repeated changes in the same amino acid positions. We performed a comparative genome-wide analysis of mutation-driven evolution of core (omnipresent) genes in 17 strains of Salmonella enterica subspecies I and 22 strains of Escherichia coli. More than 20% of core genes in both Salmonella and E. coli accumulated hot spot mutations, with a predominance of identical changes having recent evolutionary origin. There is a significant overlap in the functional categories of the adaptively evolving genes in both species, although mostly via separate molecular mechanisms. As a strong evidence of the link between adaptive mutations and virulence in Salmonella, two human-restricted serovars, Typhi and Paratyphi A, shared the highest number of genes with serovar-specific hot spot mutations. Many of the core genes affected by Typhi/Paratyphi A-specific mutations have known virulence functions. For each species, a list of nonrecombinant core genes (and the hot spot mutations therein) under positive selection is provided. PMID:22797756

  10. Insights into the molecular basis of piezophilic adaptation: Extraction of piezophilic signatures.

    PubMed

    Nath, Abhigyan; Subbiah, Karthikeyan

    2016-02-01

    Piezophiles are the organisms which can successfully survive at extreme pressure conditions. However, the molecular basis of piezophilic adaptation is still poorly understood. Analysis of the protein sequence adjustments that had taken place during evolution can help to reveal the sequence adaptation parameters responsible for protein functional and structural adaptation at such high pressure conditions. In this current work we have used SVM classifier for filtering strong instances and generated human interpretable rules from these strong instances by using the PART algorithm. These generated rules were analyzed for getting insights into the molecular signature patterns present in the piezophilic proteins. The experiments were performed on three different temperature ranges piezophilic groups, namely psychrophilic-piezophilic, mesophilic-piezophilic, and thermophilic-piezophilic for the detailed comparative study. The best classification results were obtained as we move up the temperature range from psychrophilic-piezophilic to thermophilic-piezophilic. Based on the physicochemical classification of amino acids and using feature ranking algorithms, hydrophilic and polar amino acid groups have higher discriminative ability for psychrophilic-piezophilic and mesophilic-piezophilic groups along with hydrophobic and nonpolar amino acids for the thermophilic-piezophilic groups. We also observed an overrepresentation of polar, hydrophilic and small amino acid groups in the discriminatory rules of all the three temperature range piezophiles along with aliphatic, nonpolar and hydrophobic groups in the mesophilic-piezophilic and thermophilic-piezophilic groups.

  11. Molecular masers as tracers of early stellar evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Strel'Nitskii, V. S.

    The discovery, observation, and interpretation of molecular masers in regions of active star formation are discussed. OH masers noted in these regions are the product of the disintegration of dense molecular envelopes surrounding compact H-II regions of young OB stars, and they typically have densities of about 10 to the 6th/cu cm and temperatures of about 100 K. H2O masers are connected with still earlier stages of stellar evolution, and are located closer to their parent stars than the OH sources. Strong CH3OH 2.5-cm masers are closely associated with OH masers.

  12. Reconstructing phylogenies and phenotypes: a molecular view of human evolution

    PubMed Central

    Bradley, Brenda J

    2008-01-01

    This review broadly summarizes how molecular biology has contributed to our understanding of human evolution. Molecular anthropology began in the 1960s with immunological comparisons indicating that African apes and humans were closely related and, indeed, shared a common ancestor as recently as 5 million years ago. Although initially dismissed, this finding has proven robust and numerous lines of molecular evidence now firmly place the human-ape divergence at 4–8 Ma. Resolving the trichotomy among humans, chimpanzees and gorillas took a few more decades. Despite the readily apparent physical similarities shared by African apes to the exclusion of modern humans (body hair, knuckle-walking, thin tooth enamel), the molecular support for a human–chimpanzee clade is now overwhelming. More recently, whole genome sequencing and gene mapping have shifted the focus of molecular anthropology from phylogenetic analyses to phenotypic reconstruction and functional genomics. We are starting to identify the genetic basis of the morphological, physiological and behavioural traits that distinguish modern humans from apes and apes from other primates. Most notably, recent comparative genomic analyses strongly indicate that the marked differences between modern humans and chimpanzees are likely due more to changes in gene regulation than to modifications of the genes themselves, an idea first proposed over 30 years ago. Almost weekly, press releases describe newly identified genes and regulatory elements that seem to have undergone strong positive selection along the human lineage. Loci involved in speech (e.g. FOXP2), brain development (e.g. ASPM), and skull musculature (e.g. MYH16) have been of particular interest, but some surprising candidate loci (e.g. those involved in auditory capabilities) have emerged as well. Exciting new research avenues, such as the Neanderthal Genome Project, promise that molecular analyses will continue to provide novel insights about our evolution

  13. Tandem duplication, circular permutation, molecular adaptation: how Solanaceae resist pests via inhibitors

    PubMed Central

    Kong, Lesheng; Ranganathan, Shoba

    2008-01-01

    Background The Potato type II (Pot II) family of proteinase inhibitors plays critical roles in the defense system of plants from Solanaceae family against pests. To better understand the evolution of this family, we investigated the correlation between sequence and structural repeats within this family and the evolution and molecular adaptation of Pot II genes through computational analysis, using the putative ancestral domain sequence as the basic repeat unit. Results Our analysis discovered the following interesting findings in Pot II family. (1) We classified the structural domains in Pot II family into three types (original repeat domain, circularly permuted domain, the two-chain domain) according to the existence of two linkers between the two domain components, which clearly show the circular permutation relationship between the original repeat domain and circularly permuted domain. (2) The permuted domains appear more stable than original repeat domain, from available structural information. Therefore, we proposed a multiple-repeat sequence is likely to adopt the permuted domain from contiguous sequence segments, with the N- and C-termini forming a single non-contiguous structural domain, linking the bracelet of tandem repeats. (3) The analysis of nonsynonymous/synonymous substitution rates ratio in Pot II domain revealed heterogeneous selective pressures among amino acid sites: the reactive site is under positive Darwinian selection (providing different specificity to target varieties of proteinases) while the cysteine scaffold is under purifying selection (essential for maintaining the fold). (4) For multi-repeat Pot II genes from Nicotiana genus, the proteolytic processing site is under positive Darwinian selection (which may improve the cleavage efficiency). Conclusion This paper provides comprehensive analysis and characterization of Pot II family, and enlightens our understanding on the strategies (Gene and domain duplication, structural circular

  14. Chromosome inversions, adaptive cassettes and the evolution of species' ranges.

    PubMed

    Kirkpatrick, Mark; Barrett, Brian

    2015-05-01

    A chromosome inversion can spread when it captures locally adapted alleles or when it is introduced into a species by hybridization with adapted alleles that were previously absent. We present a model that shows how both processes can cause a species range to expand. Introgression of an inversion that carries novel, locally adapted alleles is a particularly powerful mechanism for range expansion. The model supports the earlier proposal that introgression of an inversion triggered a large range expansion of a malaria mosquito. These results suggest a role for inversions as cassettes of genes that can accelerate adaptation by crossing species boundaries, rather than protecting genomes from introgression.

  15. Chromosome inversions, adaptive cassettes and the evolution of species' ranges.

    PubMed

    Kirkpatrick, Mark; Barrett, Brian

    2015-05-01

    A chromosome inversion can spread when it captures locally adapted alleles or when it is introduced into a species by hybridization with adapted alleles that were previously absent. We present a model that shows how both processes can cause a species range to expand. Introgression of an inversion that carries novel, locally adapted alleles is a particularly powerful mechanism for range expansion. The model supports the earlier proposal that introgression of an inversion triggered a large range expansion of a malaria mosquito. These results suggest a role for inversions as cassettes of genes that can accelerate adaptation by crossing species boundaries, rather than protecting genomes from introgression. PMID:25583098

  16. Flight loss linked to faster molecular evolution in insects.

    PubMed

    Mitterboeck, T Fatima; Adamowicz, Sarah J

    2013-09-22

    The loss of flight ability has occurred thousands of times independently during insect evolution. Flight loss may be linked to higher molecular evolutionary rates because of reductions in effective population sizes (Ne) and relaxed selective constraints. Reduced dispersal ability increases population subdivision, may decrease geographical range size and increases (sub)population extinction risk, thus leading to an expected reduction in Ne. Additionally, flight loss in birds has been linked to higher molecular rates of energy-related genes, probably owing to relaxed selective constraints on energy metabolism. We tested for an association between insect flight loss and molecular rates through comparative analysis in 49 phylogenetically independent transitions spanning multiple taxa, including moths, flies, beetles, mayflies, stick insects, stoneflies, scorpionflies and caddisflies, using available nuclear and mitochondrial protein-coding DNA sequences. We estimated the rate of molecular evolution of flightless (FL) and related flight-capable lineages by ratios of non-synonymous-to-synonymous substitutions (dN/dS) and overall substitution rates (OSRs). Across multiple instances of flight loss, we show a significant pattern of higher dN/dS ratios and OSRs in FL lineages in mitochondrial but not nuclear genes. These patterns may be explained by relaxed selective constraints in FL ectotherms relating to energy metabolism, possibly in combination with reduced Ne.

  17. Widespread adaptive evolution during repeated evolutionary radiations in New World lupins.

    PubMed

    Nevado, Bruno; Atchison, Guy W; Hughes, Colin E; Filatov, Dmitry A

    2016-01-01

    The evolutionary processes that drive rapid species diversification are poorly understood. In particular, it is unclear whether Darwinian adaptation or non-adaptive processes are the primary drivers of explosive species diversifications. Here we show that repeated rapid radiations within New World lupins (Lupinus, Leguminosae) were underpinned by a major increase in the frequency of adaptation acting on coding and regulatory changes genome-wide. This contrasts with far less frequent adaptation in genomes of slowly diversifying lupins and all other plant genera analysed. Furthermore, widespread shifts in optimal gene expression coincided with shifts to high rates of diversification and evolution of perenniality, a putative key adaptation trait thought to have triggered the evolutionary radiations in New World lupins. Our results reconcile long-standing debate about the relative importance of protein-coding and regulatory evolution, and represent the first unambiguous evidence for the rapid onset of lineage- and genome-wide accelerated Darwinian evolution during rapid species diversification. PMID:27498896

  18. Widespread adaptive evolution during repeated evolutionary radiations in New World lupins

    PubMed Central

    Nevado, Bruno; Atchison, Guy W.; Hughes, Colin E.; Filatov, Dmitry A.

    2016-01-01

    The evolutionary processes that drive rapid species diversification are poorly understood. In particular, it is unclear whether Darwinian adaptation or non-adaptive processes are the primary drivers of explosive species diversifications. Here we show that repeated rapid radiations within New World lupins (Lupinus, Leguminosae) were underpinned by a major increase in the frequency of adaptation acting on coding and regulatory changes genome-wide. This contrasts with far less frequent adaptation in genomes of slowly diversifying lupins and all other plant genera analysed. Furthermore, widespread shifts in optimal gene expression coincided with shifts to high rates of diversification and evolution of perenniality, a putative key adaptation trait thought to have triggered the evolutionary radiations in New World lupins. Our results reconcile long-standing debate about the relative importance of protein-coding and regulatory evolution, and represent the first unambiguous evidence for the rapid onset of lineage- and genome-wide accelerated Darwinian evolution during rapid species diversification. PMID:27498896

  19. Immune evasion and the evolution of molecular mimicry in parasites.

    PubMed

    Hurford, Amy; Day, Troy

    2013-10-01

    Parasites that are molecular mimics express proteins which resemble host proteins. This resemblance facilitates immune evasion because the immune molecules with the specificity to react with the parasite also cross-react with the host's own proteins, and these lymphocytes are rare. Given this advantage, why are not most parasites molecular mimics? Here we explore potential factors that can select against molecular mimicry in parasites and thereby limit its occurrence. We consider two hypotheses: (1) molecular mimics are more likely to induce autoimmunity in their hosts, and hosts with autoimmunity generate fewer new infections (the "costly autoimmunity hypothesis"); and (2) molecular mimicry compromises protein functioning, lowering the within-host replication rate and leading to fewer new infections (the "mimicry trade-off hypothesis"). Our analysis shows that although both hypotheses may select against molecular mimicry in parasites, unique hallmarks of protein expression identify whether selection is due to the costly autoimmunity hypothesis or the mimicry trade-off hypothesis. We show that understanding the relevant selective forces is necessary to predict how different medical interventions will affect the proportion of hosts that experience the different infection types, and that if parasite evolution is ignored, interventions aimed at reducing infection-induced autoimmunity may ultimately fail.

  20. Molecular mechanisms underlying the exceptional adaptations of batoid fins

    PubMed Central

    Nakamura, Tetsuya; Klomp, Jeff; Pieretti, Joyce; Schneider, Igor; Gehrke, Andrew R.; Shubin, Neil H.

    2015-01-01

    Extreme novelties in the shape and size of paired fins are exemplified by extinct and extant cartilaginous and bony fishes. Pectoral fins of skates and rays, such as the little skate (Batoid, Leucoraja erinacea), show a strikingly unique morphology where the pectoral fin extends anteriorly to ultimately fuse with the head. This results in a morphology that essentially surrounds the body and is associated with the evolution of novel swimming mechanisms in the group. In an approach that extends from RNA sequencing to in situ hybridization to functional assays, we show that anterior and posterior portions of the pectoral fin have different genetic underpinnings: canonical genes of appendage development control posterior fin development via an apical ectodermal ridge (AER), whereas an alternative Homeobox (Hox)–Fibroblast growth factor (Fgf)–Wingless type MMTV integration site family (Wnt) genetic module in the anterior region creates an AER-like structure that drives anterior fin expansion. Finally, we show that GLI family zinc finger 3 (Gli3), which is an anterior repressor of tetrapod digits, is expressed in the posterior half of the pectoral fin of skate, shark, and zebrafish but in the anterior side of the pelvic fin. Taken together, these data point to both highly derived and deeply ancestral patterns of gene expression in skate pectoral fins, shedding light on the molecular mechanisms behind the evolution of novel fin morphologies. PMID:26644578

  1. Molecular mechanisms underlying the exceptional adaptations of batoid fins.

    PubMed

    Nakamura, Tetsuya; Klomp, Jeff; Pieretti, Joyce; Schneider, Igor; Gehrke, Andrew R; Shubin, Neil H

    2015-12-29

    Extreme novelties in the shape and size of paired fins are exemplified by extinct and extant cartilaginous and bony fishes. Pectoral fins of skates and rays, such as the little skate (Batoid, Leucoraja erinacea), show a strikingly unique morphology where the pectoral fin extends anteriorly to ultimately fuse with the head. This results in a morphology that essentially surrounds the body and is associated with the evolution of novel swimming mechanisms in the group. In an approach that extends from RNA sequencing to in situ hybridization to functional assays, we show that anterior and posterior portions of the pectoral fin have different genetic underpinnings: canonical genes of appendage development control posterior fin development via an apical ectodermal ridge (AER), whereas an alternative Homeobox (Hox)-Fibroblast growth factor (Fgf)-Wingless type MMTV integration site family (Wnt) genetic module in the anterior region creates an AER-like structure that drives anterior fin expansion. Finally, we show that GLI family zinc finger 3 (Gli3), which is an anterior repressor of tetrapod digits, is expressed in the posterior half of the pectoral fin of skate, shark, and zebrafish but in the anterior side of the pelvic fin. Taken together, these data point to both highly derived and deeply ancestral patterns of gene expression in skate pectoral fins, shedding light on the molecular mechanisms behind the evolution of novel fin morphologies. PMID:26644578

  2. An adaptive Tikhonov regularization method for fluorescence molecular tomography.

    PubMed

    Cao, Xu; Zhang, Bin; Wang, Xin; Liu, Fei; Liu, Ke; Luo, Jianwen; Bai, Jing

    2013-08-01

    The high degree of absorption and scattering of photons propagating through biological tissues makes fluorescence molecular tomography (FMT) reconstruction a severe ill-posed problem and the reconstructed result is susceptible to noise in the measurements. To obtain a reasonable solution, Tikhonov regularization (TR) is generally employed to solve the inverse problem of FMT. However, with a fixed regularization parameter, the Tikhonov solutions suffer from low resolution. In this work, an adaptive Tikhonov regularization (ATR) method is presented. Considering that large regularization parameters can smoothen the solution with low spatial resolution, while small regularization parameters can sharpen the solution with high level of noise, the ATR method adaptively updates the spatially varying regularization parameters during the iteration process and uses them to penalize the solutions. The ATR method can adequately sharpen the feasible region with fluorescent probes and smoothen the region without fluorescent probes resorting to no complementary priori information. Phantom experiments are performed to verify the feasibility of the proposed method. The results demonstrate that the proposed method can improve the spatial resolution and reduce the noise of FMT reconstruction at the same time.

  3. Plant adaptation to low atmospheric pressures: potential molecular responses

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ferl, Robert J.; Schuerger, Andrew C.; Paul, Anna-Lisa; Gurley, William B.; Corey, Kenneth; Bucklin, Ray

    2002-01-01

    There is an increasing realization that it may be impossible to attain Earth normal atmospheric pressures in orbital, lunar, or Martian greenhouses, simply because the construction materials do not exist to meet the extraordinary constraints imposed by balancing high engineering requirements against high lift costs. This equation essentially dictates that NASA have in place the capability to grow plants at reduced atmospheric pressure. Yet current understanding of plant growth at low pressures is limited to just a few experiments and relatively rudimentary assessments of plant vigor and growth. The tools now exist, however, to make rapid progress toward understanding the fundamental nature of plant responses and adaptations to low pressures, and to develop strategies for mitigating detrimental effects by engineering the growth conditions or by engineering the plants themselves. The genomes of rice and the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana have recently been sequenced in their entirety, and public sector and commercial DNA chips are becoming available such that thousands of genes can be assayed at once. A fundamental understanding of plant responses and adaptation to low pressures can now be approached and translated into procedures and engineering considerations to enhance plant growth at low atmospheric pressures. In anticipation of such studies, we present here the background arguments supporting these contentions, as well as informed speculation about the kinds of molecular physiological responses that might be expected of plants in low-pressure environments.

  4. Plant adaptation to low atmospheric pressures: potential molecular responses.

    PubMed

    Ferl, Robert J; Schuerger, Andrew C; Paul, Anna-Lisa; Gurley, William B; Corey, Kenneth; Bucklin, Ray

    2002-01-01

    There is an increasing realization that it may be impossible to attain Earth normal atmospheric pressures in orbital, lunar, or Martian greenhouses, simply because the construction materials do not exist to meet the extraordinary constraints imposed by balancing high engineering requirements against high lift costs. This equation essentially dictates that NASA have in place the capability to grow plants at reduced atmospheric pressure. Yet current understanding of plant growth at low pressures is limited to just a few experiments and relatively rudimentary assessments of plant vigor and growth. The tools now exist, however, to make rapid progress toward understanding the fundamental nature of plant responses and adaptations to low pressures, and to develop strategies for mitigating detrimental effects by engineering the growth conditions or by engineering the plants themselves. The genomes of rice and the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana have recently been sequenced in their entirety, and public sector and commercial DNA chips are becoming available such that thousands of genes can be assayed at once. A fundamental understanding of plant responses and adaptation to low pressures can now be approached and translated into procedures and engineering considerations to enhance plant growth at low atmospheric pressures. In anticipation of such studies, we present here the background arguments supporting these contentions, as well as informed speculation about the kinds of molecular physiological responses that might be expected of plants in low-pressure environments. PMID:11987308

  5. Characterizing Microbe-Environment Interactions Through Experimental Evolution: The Autonomous Adaptive Directed Evolution Chamber

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ibanez, C. R.; Blaich, J.; Owyang, S.; Storrs, A.; Moffet, A.; Wong, N.; Zhou, J.; Gentry, D.

    2015-12-01

    We are developing a laboratory system for studying micro- to meso-scale interactions between microorganisms and their physicochemical environments. The Autonomous Adaptive Directed Evolution Chamber (AADEC) cultures microorganisms in controlled,small-scale geochemical environments. It observes corresponding microbial interactions to these environments and has the ability to adjust thermal, chemical, and other parameters in real time in response to these interactions. In addition to the sensed data, the system allows the generation of time-resolved ecological, genomic, etc. samples on the order of microbial generations. The AADEC currently houses cultures in liquid media and controls UVC radiation, heat exposure, and nutrient supply. In a proof-of-concept experimental evolution application, it can increase UVC radiation resistance of Escherichia coli cultures by iteratively exposing them to UVC and allowing the surviving cells to regrow. A baseline characterization generated a million fold resistance increase. This demonstration uses a single-well growth chamber prototype, but it was limited by scalability. We have expanded upon this system by implementing a microwell plate compatible fluidics system and sensor housing. This microwell plate system increases the diversity of microbial interactions seen in response to the geochemical environments generated by the system, allowing greater control over individual cultures' environments and detection of rarer events. The custom microfluidic card matches the footprint of a standard microwell plate. This card enables controllable fluid flow between wells and introduces multiple separate exposure and sensor chambers, increasing the variety of sensors compatible with the system. This gives the device control over scale and the interconnectedness of environments within the system. The increased controllability of the multiwell system provides a platform for implementing machine learning algorithms that will autonomously

  6. Contrasted modes of evolution in the same genome: allozymes and adaptive change in Heliconius.

    PubMed

    Turner, J R; Johnson, M S; Eanes, W F

    1979-04-01

    Butterflies in the South American genus Heliconius have undergone a spectacular adaptive radiation (with convergent evolution between some lines) in their color patterns; this has been produced by natural selection for muellerian mimicry. The genetic basis of this radiation, shown by crossing highly differentiated races within two of the species, is homozygosity for alternative alleles at some half dozen loci. In complete contrast, allozyme loci in these butterflies are strongly heterozygous and show only frequency differences (never amounting to homozygosity of alternative alleles) between races; the amount of allozyme divergence is the same between races of H. erato and H. sara, although in color pattern the first forms marked races and the other does not. For the allozymes, there is a strong correlation over loci for rate of divergence between species and average heterozygosity. This is not true of the genes controlling color pattern. Heterozygosity of the enzymes is correlated with subunit molecular weight. Thus, different parts of the genome can evolve in different ways simultaneously; genes controlling color pattern in the "classical" mode, and allozymes in a different mode in which the rate of evolution is related to their heterozygosity (a "balance" or "neutral" mode).

  7. Trickle-down evolution: an approach to getting major evolutionary adaptive changes into textbooks and curricula.

    PubMed

    Padian, Kevin

    2008-08-01

    Although contemporary high school and college textbooks of biology generally cover the principles and data of microevolution (genetic and populational change) and speciation rather well, coverage of what is known of the major changes in evolution (macroevolution), and how the evidence is understood is generally poor to nonexistent. It is critical to improve this because acceptance of evolution by the American public rests on the understanding of how we know what we know about the emergence of major new taxonomic groups, and about their adaptations, behaviors, and ecologies in geologic time. An efficient approach to this problem is to improve the illustrations in college textbooks to show the consilience of different lines of fossil, morphological, and molecular evidence mapped on phylogenies. Such "evograms" will markedly improve traditional illustrations of phylogenies, "menageries," and "companatomies." If "evograms" are installed at the college level, the basic principles and evidence of macroevolution will be more likely taught in K-12, thus providing an essential missing piece in biological education. PMID:21669782

  8. Evolution and adaptation of hemagglutinin gene of human H5N1 influenza virus.

    PubMed

    Wei, Kaifa; Chen, Yanfeng; Chen, Juan; Wu, Lingjuan; Xie, Daoxin

    2012-06-01

    The H5N1 HPAI virus has brought heavy loss to poultry industry. Although, there exists limited human-to-human transmission, it poses potential serious risks to public health. HA is responsible for receptor-binding and membrane-fusion and contains the host receptor-binding sites and major epitopes for neutralizing antibodies. To investigate molecular adaption of HPAI H5N1 viruses, we performed a phylogenetic analysis of HA sequences with 240 HPAI virus strains isolated from human. The topology of the tree reveals overall clustering of strains in four major clusters based on geographic location, and shows antigenic diversity of HA of human H5N1 isolates co-circulating in Asia, Africa, and Europe. The four clusters possess distinct features within the cleavage site and glycosylation sites, respectively. We identified six sites apparently evolving under positive selection, five of which persist in the population. Three positively selected sites are found to be located either within or flanking the receptor-binding sites, suggesting that selection at these sites may increase the affinity to human-type receptor. Furthermore, some sites are also associated with glycosylation and antigenic changes. In addition, two sites are found to be selected differentially in the two clusters. The analyses provide us deep insight into the adaptive evolution of human H5N1 viruses, show us several candidate mutations that could cause a pandemic, and suggest that efficiency measures should be taken to deal with potential risks.

  9. The expansion of amino-acid repeats is not associated to adaptive evolution in mammalian genes

    PubMed Central

    2009-01-01

    Background The expansion of amino acid repeats is determined by a high mutation rate and can be increased or limited by selection. It has been suggested that recent expansions could be associated with the potential of adaptation to new environments. In this work, we quantify the strength of this association, as well as the contribution of potential confounding factors. Results Mammalian positively selected genes have accumulated more recent amino acid repeats than other mammalian genes. However, we found little support for an accelerated evolutionary rate as the main driver for the expansion of amino acid repeats. The most significant predictors of amino acid repeats are gene function and GC content. There is no correlation with expression level. Conclusions Our analyses show that amino acid repeat expansions are causally independent from protein adaptive evolution in mammalian genomes. Relaxed purifying selection or positive selection do not associate with more or more recent amino acid repeats. Their occurrence is slightly favoured by the sequence context but mainly determined by the molecular function of the gene. PMID:20021652

  10. Molecular evolution of haemagglutinin (H) gene in measles virus.

    PubMed

    Kimura, Hirokazu; Saitoh, Mika; Kobayashi, Miho; Ishii, Haruyuki; Saraya, Takeshi; Kurai, Daisuke; Tsukagoshi, Hiroyuki; Shirabe, Komei; Nishina, Atsuyoshi; Kozawa, Kunihisa; Kuroda, Makoto; Takeuchi, Fumihiko; Sekizuka, Tsuyoshi; Minakami, Hisanori; Ryo, Akihide; Takeda, Makoto

    2015-01-01

    We studied the molecular evolution of the haemagglutinin (H) gene (full length) in all genotypes (24 genotypes, 297 strains) of measles virus (MeV). The gene's evolutionary timescale was estimated by the Bayesian Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) method. We also analysed positive selection sites. The MCMC tree indicated that the MeV H gene diverged from the rinderpest virus (same genus) about 250 years ago and that 24 MeV genotypes formed 3 lineages dating back to a 1915 ancestor (95% highest posterior density [HPD] 1882-1941) with relatively rapid evolution (mean rate: 9.02 × 10(-4) substitutions/site/year). The 3 lineages diverged in 1915 (lineage 1, 95% HPD 1882-1941), 1954 (lineage 2, 95% HPD 1937-1969), and 1940 (lineage 3, 95% HPD 1927-1952). These 24 genotypes may have diverged and emerged between the 1940s and 1990 s. Selective pressure analysis identified many negative selection sites on the H protein but only a few positive selection sites, suggesting strongly operated structural and/or functional constraint of changes on the H protein. Based on the molecular evolution of H gene, an ancestor MeV of the 24 genotypes emerged about 100 years ago and the structure of H protein has been well conserved. PMID:26130388

  11. Epidemiology, Molecular Epidemiology and Evolution of Bovine Respiratory Syncytial Virus

    PubMed Central

    Sarmiento-Silva, Rosa Elena; Nakamura-Lopez, Yuko; Vaughan, Gilberto

    2012-01-01

    The bovine respiratory syncytial virus (BRSV) is an enveloped, negative sense, single-stranded RNA virus belonging to the pneumovirus genus within the family Paramyxoviridae. BRSV has been recognized as a major cause of respiratory disease in young calves since the early 1970s. The analysis of BRSV infection was originally hampered by its characteristic lability and poor growth in vitro. However, the advent of numerous immunological and molecular methods has facilitated the study of BRSV enormously. The knowledge gained from these studies has also provided the opportunity to develop safe, stable, attenuated virus vaccine candidates. Nonetheless, many aspects of the epidemiology, molecular epidemiology and evolution of the virus are still not fully understood. The natural course of infection is rather complex and further complicates diagnosis, treatment and the implementation of preventive measures aimed to control the disease. Therefore, understanding the mechanisms by which BRSV is able to establish infection is needed to prevent viral and disease spread. This review discusses important information regarding the epidemiology and molecular epidemiology of BRSV worldwide, and it highlights the importance of viral evolution in virus transmission. PMID:23202546

  12. Carbonic anhydrase and the molecular evolution of C4 photosynthesis.

    PubMed

    Ludwig, Martha

    2012-01-01

    C(4) photosynthesis, a biochemical CO(2)-concentrating mechanism (CCM), evolved more than 60 times within the angiosperms from C(3) ancestors. The genus Flaveria, which contains species demonstrating C(3), C(3)-C(4), C(4)-like or C(4) photosynthesis, is a model for examining the molecular evolution of the C(4) pathway. Work with carbonic anhydrase (CA), and C(3) and C(4) Flaveria congeners has added significantly to the understanding of this process. The C(4) form of CA3, a β-CA, which catalyses the first reaction in the C(4) pathway by hydrating atmospheric CO(2) to bicarbonate in the cytosol of mesophyll cells (mcs), evolved from a chloroplastic C(3) ancestor. The molecular modifications to the ancestral CA3 gene included the loss of the sequence encoding the chloroplast transit peptide, and mutations in regulatory regions that resulted in high levels of expression in the C(4) mesophyll. Analyses of the CA3 proteins and regulatory elements from Flaveria photosynthetic intermediates indicated C(4) biochemistry very likely evolved in a specific, stepwise manner in this genus. The details of the mechanisms involved in the molecular evolution of other C(4) plant β-CAs are unknown; however, comparative genetics indicate gene duplication and neofunctionalization played significant roles as they did in Flaveria.

  13. Evolution of a single gene highlights the complexity underlying molecular descriptions of fitness

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peña, Matthew I.; Van Itallie, Elizabeth; Bennett, Matthew R.; Shamoo, Yousif

    2010-06-01

    Evolution by natural selection is the driving force behind the endless variation we see in nature, yet our understanding of how changes at the molecular level give rise to different phenotypes and altered fitness at the population level remains inadequate. The reproductive fitness of an organism is the most basic metric that describes the chance that an organism will succeed or fail in its environment and it depends upon a complex network of inter- and intramolecular interactions. A deeper understanding of the quantitative relationships relating molecular evolution to adaptation, and consequently fitness, can guide our understanding of important issues in biomedicine such as drug resistance and the engineering of new organisms with applications to biotechnology. We have developed the "weak link" approach to determine how changes in molecular structure and function can relate to fitness and evolutionary outcomes. By replacing adenylate kinase (AK), an essential gene, in a thermophile with a homologous AK from a mesophile we have created a maladapted weak link that produces a temperature-sensitive phenotype. The recombinant strain adapts to nonpermissive temperatures through point mutations to the weak link that increase both stability and activity of the enzyme AK at higher temperatures. Here, we propose a fitness function relating enzyme activity to growth rate and use it to create a dynamic model of a population of bacterial cells. Using metabolic control analysis we show that the growth rate exhibits thresholdlike behavior, saturating at high enzyme activity as other reactions in the energy metabolism pathway become rate limiting. The dynamic model accurately recapitulates observed evolutionary outcomes. These findings suggest that in vitro enzyme kinetic data, in combination with metabolic network analysis, can be used to create fitness functions and dynamic models of evolution within simple metabolic systems.

  14. Evolution of a single gene highlights the complexity underlying molecular descriptions of fitness

    PubMed Central

    Peña, Matthew I.; Van Itallie, Elizabeth; Bennett, Matthew R.; Shamoo, Yousif

    2010-01-01

    Evolution by natural selection is the driving force behind the endless variation we see in nature, yet our understanding of how changes at the molecular level give rise to different phenotypes and altered fitness at the population level remains inadequate. The reproductive fitness of an organism is the most basic metric that describes the chance that an organism will succeed or fail in its environment and it depends upon a complex network of inter- and intramolecular interactions. A deeper understanding of the quantitative relationships relating molecular evolution to adaptation, and consequently fitness, can guide our understanding of important issues in biomedicine such as drug resistance and the engineering of new organisms with applications to biotechnology. We have developed the “weak link” approach to determine how changes in molecular structure and function can relate to fitness and evolutionary outcomes. By replacing adenylate kinase (AK), an essential gene, in a thermophile with a homologous AK from a mesophile we have created a maladapted weak link that produces a temperature-sensitive phenotype. The recombinant strain adapts to nonpermissive temperatures through point mutations to the weak link that increase both stability and activity of the enzyme AK at higher temperatures. Here, we propose a fitness function relating enzyme activity to growth rate and use it to create a dynamic model of a population of bacterial cells. Using metabolic control analysis we show that the growth rate exhibits thresholdlike behavior, saturating at high enzyme activity as other reactions in the energy metabolism pathway become rate limiting. The dynamic model accurately recapitulates observed evolutionary outcomes. These findings suggest that in vitro enzyme kinetic data, in combination with metabolic network analysis, can be used to create fitness functions and dynamic models of evolution within simple metabolic systems. PMID:20590336

  15. Duplication and Adaptive Evolution of a Key Centromeric Protein in Mimulus, a Genus with Female Meiotic Drive.

    PubMed

    Finseth, Findley R; Dong, Yuzhu; Saunders, Arpiar; Fishman, Lila

    2015-10-01

    The fundamental asymmetry of female meiosis creates an arena for genetic elements to compete for inclusion in the egg, promoting the selfish evolution of centromere variants that maximize their transmission to the future egg. Such "female meiotic drive" has been hypothesized to explain the paradoxically complex and rapidly evolving nature of centromeric DNA and proteins. Although theoretically widespread, few cases of active drive have been observed, thereby limiting the opportunities to directly assess the impact of centromeric drive on molecular variation at centromeres and binding proteins. Here, we characterize the molecular evolutionary patterns of CENH3, the centromere-defining histone variant, in Mimulus monkeyflowers, a genus with one of the few known cases of active centromere-associated female meiotic drive. First, we identify a novel duplication of CENH3 in diploid Mimulus, including in lineages with actively driving centromeres. Second, we demonstrate long-term adaptive evolution at several sites in the N-terminus of CENH3, a region with some meiosis-specific functions that putatively interacts with centromeric DNA. Finally, we infer that the paralogs evolve under different selective regimes; some sites in the N-terminus evolve under positive selection in the pro-orthologs or only one paralog (CENH3_B) and the paralogs exhibit significantly different patterns of polymorphism within populations. Our finding of long-term, adaptive evolution at CENH3 in the context of centromere-associated meiotic drive supports an antagonistic, coevolutionary battle for evolutionary dominance between centromeric DNA and binding proteins.

  16. Adaptive evolution of complex innovations through stepwise metabolic niche expansion.

    PubMed

    Szappanos, Balázs; Fritzemeier, Jonathan; Csörgő, Bálint; Lázár, Viktória; Lu, Xiaowen; Fekete, Gergely; Bálint, Balázs; Herczeg, Róbert; Nagy, István; Notebaart, Richard A; Lercher, Martin J; Pál, Csaba; Papp, Balázs

    2016-01-01

    A central challenge in evolutionary biology concerns the mechanisms by which complex metabolic innovations requiring multiple mutations arise. Here, we propose that metabolic innovations accessible through the addition of a single reaction serve as stepping stones towards the later establishment of complex metabolic features in another environment. We demonstrate the feasibility of this hypothesis through three complementary analyses. First, using genome-scale metabolic modelling, we show that complex metabolic innovations in Escherichia coli can arise via changing nutrient conditions. Second, using phylogenetic approaches, we demonstrate that the acquisition patterns of complex metabolic pathways during the evolutionary history of bacterial genomes support the hypothesis. Third, we show how adaptation of laboratory populations of E. coli to one carbon source facilitates the later adaptation to another carbon source. Our work demonstrates how complex innovations can evolve through series of adaptive steps without the need to invoke non-adaptive processes. PMID:27197754

  17. Trichinella spiralis: the evolution of adaptation and parasitism

    Technology Transfer Automated Retrieval System (TEKTRAN)

    Parasitism among nematodes has occurred in multiple, independent events. Deciphering processes that drive species diversity and adaptation are keys to understanding parasitism and advancing control strategies. Studies have been put forth on morphological and physiological aspects of parasitism and a...

  18. Molecular evolution of WDR62, a gene that regulates neocorticogenesis.

    PubMed

    Pervaiz, Nashaiman; Abbasi, Amir Ali

    2016-09-01

    Human brain evolution is characterized by dramatic expansion in cerebral cortex size. WDR62 (WD repeat domain 62) is one of the important gene in controlling human cortical development. Mutations in WDR62 lead to primary microcephaly, a neurodevelopmental disease characterized by three to four fold reduction in cerebral cortex size of affected individuals. This study analyzes comparative protein evolutionary rate to provide a useful insight into the molecular evolution of WDR62 and hence pinpointed human specific amino acid replacements. Comparative analysis of human WDR62 with two archaic humans (Neanderthals and Denisovans) and modern human populations revealed that five hominin specific amino acid residues (human specific amino acids shared with two archaic humans) might have been accumulated in the common ancestor of extinct archaic humans and modern humans about 550,000-765,000 years ago. Collectively, the data demonstrates an acceleration of WDR62 sequence evolution in hominin lineage and suggests that the ability of WDR62 protein to mediate the neurogenesis has been altered in the course of hominin evolution. PMID:27114917

  19. Family Wide Molecular Adaptations to Underground Life in African Mole-Rats Revealed by Phylogenomic Analysis.

    PubMed

    Davies, Kalina T J; Bennett, Nigel C; Tsagkogeorga, Georgia; Rossiter, Stephen J; Faulkes, Christopher G

    2015-12-01

    During their evolutionary radiation, mammals have colonized diverse habitats. Arguably the subterranean niche is the most inhospitable of these, characterized by reduced oxygen, elevated carbon dioxide, absence of light, scarcity of food, and a substrate that is energetically costly to burrow through. Of all lineages to have transitioned to a subterranean niche, African mole-rats are one of the most successful. Much of their ecological success can be attributed to a diet of plant storage organs, which has allowed them to colonize climatically varied habitats across sub-Saharan Africa, and has probably contributed to the evolution of their diverse social systems. Yet despite their many remarkable phenotypic specializations, little is known about molecular adaptations underlying these traits. To address this, we sequenced the transcriptomes of seven mole-rat taxa, including three solitary species, and combined new sequences with existing genomic data sets. Alignments of more than 13,000 protein-coding genes encompassed, for the first time, all six genera and the full spectrum of ecological and social variation in the clade. We detected positive selection within the mole-rat clade and along ancestral branches in approximately 700 genes including loci associated with tumorigenesis, aging, morphological development, and sociality. By combining these results with gene ontology annotation and protein-protein networks, we identified several clusters of functionally related genes. This family wide analysis of molecular evolution in mole-rats has identified a suite of positively selected genes, deepening our understanding of the extreme phenotypic traits exhibited by this group.

  20. A heuristic model on the role of plasticity in adaptive evolution: plasticity increases adaptation, population viability and genetic variation.

    PubMed

    Gomez-Mestre, Ivan; Jovani, Roger

    2013-11-22

    An ongoing new synthesis in evolutionary theory is expanding our view of the sources of heritable variation beyond point mutations of fixed phenotypic effects to include environmentally sensitive changes in gene regulation. This expansion of the paradigm is necessary given ample evidence for a heritable ability to alter gene expression in response to environmental cues. In consequence, single genotypes are often capable of adaptively expressing different phenotypes in different environments, i.e. are adaptively plastic. We present an individual-based heuristic model to compare the adaptive dynamics of populations composed of plastic or non-plastic genotypes under a wide range of scenarios where we modify environmental variation, mutation rate and costs of plasticity. The model shows that adaptive plasticity contributes to the maintenance of genetic variation within populations, reduces bottlenecks when facing rapid environmental changes and confers an overall faster rate of adaptation. In fluctuating environments, plasticity is favoured by selection and maintained in the population. However, if the environment stabilizes and costs of plasticity are high, plasticity is reduced by selection, leading to genetic assimilation, which could result in species diversification. More broadly, our model shows that adaptive plasticity is a common consequence of selection under environmental heterogeneity, and hence a potentially common phenomenon in nature. Thus, taking adaptive plasticity into account substantially extends our view of adaptive evolution.

  1. The molecular evolution of β-carbonic anhydrase in Flaveria.

    PubMed

    Ludwig, Martha

    2011-05-01

    Limited information exists regarding molecular events that occurred during the evolution of C(4) plants from their C(3) ancestors. The enzyme β-carbonic anhydrase (CA; EC 4.2.1.1), which catalyses the reversible hydration of CO(2), is present in multiple forms in C(3) and C(4) plants, and has given insights into the molecular evolution of the C(4) pathway in the genus Flaveria. cDNAs encoding three distinct isoforms of β-CA, CA1-CA3, have been isolated and examined from Flaveria C(3) and C(4) congeners. Sequence data, expression analyses of CA orthologues, and chloroplast import assays with radiolabelled CA precursor proteins from the C(3) species F. pringlei Gandoger and the C(4) species F. bidentis (L.) Kuntze have shown that both contain chloroplastic and cytosolic forms of the enzyme, and the potential roles of these isoforms are discussed. The data also identified CA3 as the cytosolic isoform important in C(4) photosynthesis and indicate that the C(4) CA3 gene evolved as a result of gene duplication and neofunctionalization, which involved mutations in coding and non-coding regions of the ancestral C(3) CA3 gene. Comparisons of the deduced CA3 amino acid sequences from Flaveria C(3), C(4), and photosynthetic intermediate species showed that all the C(3)-C(4) intermediates investigated and F. brownii, a C(4)-like species, have a C(3)-type CA3, while F. vaginata, another C(4)-like species, contains a C(4)-type CA3. These observations correlate with the photosynthetic physiologies of the intermediates, suggesting that the molecular evolution of C(4) photosynthesis in Flaveria may have resulted from a temporally dependent, stepwise modification of protein-encoding genes and their regulatory elements.

  2. Molecular signature of hypersaline adaptation: insights from genome and proteome composition of halophilic prokaryotes

    PubMed Central

    Paul, Sandip; Bag, Sumit K; Das, Sabyasachi; Harvill, Eric T; Dutta, Chitra

    2008-01-01

    Background Halophilic prokaryotes are adapted to thrive in extreme conditions of salinity. Identification and analysis of distinct macromolecular characteristics of halophiles provide insight into the factors responsible for their adaptation to high-salt environments. The current report presents an extensive and systematic comparative analysis of genome and proteome composition of halophilic and non-halophilic microorganisms, with a view to identify such macromolecular signatures of haloadaptation. Results Comparative analysis of the genomes and proteomes of halophiles and non-halophiles reveals some common trends in halophiles that transcend the boundary of phylogenetic relationship and the genomic GC-content of the species. At the protein level, halophilic species are characterized by low hydrophobicity, over-representation of acidic residues, especially Asp, under-representation of Cys, lower propensities for helix formation and higher propensities for coil structure. At the DNA level, the dinucleotide abundance profiles of halophilic genomes bear some common characteristics, which are quite distinct from those of non-halophiles, and hence may be regarded as specific genomic signatures for salt-adaptation. The synonymous codon usage in halophiles also exhibits similar patterns regardless of their long-term evolutionary history. Conclusion The generality of molecular signatures for environmental adaptation of extreme salt-loving organisms, demonstrated in the present study, advocates the convergent evolution of halophilic species towards specific genome and amino acid composition, irrespective of their varying GC-bias and widely disparate taxonomic positions. The adapted features of halophiles seem to be related to physical principles governing DNA and protein stability, in response to the extreme environmental conditions under which they thrive. PMID:18397532

  3. Genome Wide Analyses Reveal Little Evidence for Adaptive Evolution in Many Plant Species

    PubMed Central

    Gossmann, Toni I.; Song, Bao-Hua; Windsor, Aaron J.; Mitchell-Olds, Thomas; Dixon, Christopher J.; Kapralov, Maxim V.; Filatov, Dmitry A.; Eyre-Walker, Adam

    2010-01-01

    The relative contribution of advantageous and neutral mutations to the evolutionary process is a central problem in evolutionary biology. Current estimates suggest that whereas Drosophila, mice, and bacteria have undergone extensive adaptive evolution, hominids show little or no evidence of adaptive evolution in protein-coding sequences. This may be a consequence of differences in effective population size. To study the matter further, we have investigated whether plants show evidence of adaptive evolution using an extension of the McDonald–Kreitman test that explicitly models slightly deleterious mutations by estimating the distribution of fitness effects of new mutations. We apply this method to data from nine pairs of species. Altogether more than 2,400 loci with an average length of ≈280 nucleotides were analyzed. We observe very similar results in all species; we find little evidence of adaptive amino acid substitution in any comparison except sunflowers. This may be because many plant species have modest effective population sizes. PMID:20299543

  4. Distinct genomic signatures of adaptation in pre- and postnatal environments during human evolution.

    PubMed

    Uddin, Monica; Goodman, Morris; Erez, Offer; Romero, Roberto; Liu, Guozhen; Islam, Munirul; Opazo, Juan C; Sherwood, Chet C; Grossman, Lawrence I; Wildman, Derek E

    2008-03-01

    The human genome evolution project seeks to reveal the genetic underpinnings of key phenotypic features that are distinctive of humans, such as a greatly enlarged cerebral cortex, slow development, and long life spans. This project has focused predominantly on genotypic changes during the 6-million-year descent from the last common ancestor (LCA) of humans and chimpanzees. Here, we argue that adaptive genotypic changes during earlier periods of evolutionary history also helped shape the distinctive human phenotype. Using comparative genome sequence data from 10 vertebrate species, we find a signature of human ancestry-specific adaptive evolution in 1,240 genes during their descent from the LCA with rodents. We also find that the signature of adaptive evolution is significantly different for highly expressed genes in human fetal and adult-stage tissues. Functional annotation clustering shows that on the ape stem lineage, an especially evident adaptively evolved biological pathway contains genes that function in mitochondria, are crucially involved in aerobic energy production, and are highly expressed in two energy-demanding tissues, heart and brain. Also, on this ape stem lineage, there was adaptive evolution among genes associated with human autoimmune and aging-related diseases. During more recent human descent, the adaptively evolving, highly expressed genes in fetal brain are involved in mediating neuronal connectivity. Comparing adaptively evolving genes from pre- and postnatal-stage tissues suggests that different selective pressures act on the development vs. the maintenance of the human phenotype.

  5. Iterative adaptive radiations of fossil canids show no evidence for diversity-dependent trait evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Slater, Graham J.

    2015-04-01

    A long-standing hypothesis in adaptive radiation theory is that ecological opportunity constrains rates of phenotypic evolution, generating a burst of morphological disparity early in clade history. Empirical support for the early burst model is rare in comparative data, however. One possible reason for this lack of support is that most phylogenetic tests have focused on extant clades, neglecting information from fossil taxa. Here, I test for the expected signature of adaptive radiation using the outstanding 40-My fossil record of North American canids. Models implying time- and diversity-dependent rates of morphological evolution are strongly rejected for two ecologically important traits, body size and grinding area of the molar teeth. Instead, Ornstein-Uhlenbeck processes implying repeated, and sometimes rapid, attraction to distinct dietary adaptive peaks receive substantial support. Diversity-dependent rates of morphological evolution seem uncommon in clades, such as canids, that exhibit a pattern of replicated adaptive radiation. Instead, these clades might best be thought of as deterministic radiations in constrained Simpsonian subzones of a major adaptive zone. Support for adaptive peak models may be diagnostic of subzonal radiations. It remains to be seen whether early burst or ecological opportunity models can explain broader adaptive radiations, such as the evolution of higher taxa.

  6. Iterative adaptive radiations of fossil canids show no evidence for diversity-dependent trait evolution.

    PubMed

    Slater, Graham J

    2015-04-21

    A long-standing hypothesis in adaptive radiation theory is that ecological opportunity constrains rates of phenotypic evolution, generating a burst of morphological disparity early in clade history. Empirical support for the early burst model is rare in comparative data, however. One possible reason for this lack of support is that most phylogenetic tests have focused on extant clades, neglecting information from fossil taxa. Here, I test for the expected signature of adaptive radiation using the outstanding 40-My fossil record of North American canids. Models implying time- and diversity-dependent rates of morphological evolution are strongly rejected for two ecologically important traits, body size and grinding area of the molar teeth. Instead, Ornstein-Uhlenbeck processes implying repeated, and sometimes rapid, attraction to distinct dietary adaptive peaks receive substantial support. Diversity-dependent rates of morphological evolution seem uncommon in clades, such as canids, that exhibit a pattern of replicated adaptive radiation. Instead, these clades might best be thought of as deterministic radiations in constrained Simpsonian subzones of a major adaptive zone. Support for adaptive peak models may be diagnostic of subzonal radiations. It remains to be seen whether early burst or ecological opportunity models can explain broader adaptive radiations, such as the evolution of higher taxa.

  7. Iterative adaptive radiations of fossil canids show no evidence for diversity-dependent trait evolution

    PubMed Central

    Slater, Graham J.

    2015-01-01

    A long-standing hypothesis in adaptive radiation theory is that ecological opportunity constrains rates of phenotypic evolution, generating a burst of morphological disparity early in clade history. Empirical support for the early burst model is rare in comparative data, however. One possible reason for this lack of support is that most phylogenetic tests have focused on extant clades, neglecting information from fossil taxa. Here, I test for the expected signature of adaptive radiation using the outstanding 40-My fossil record of North American canids. Models implying time- and diversity-dependent rates of morphological evolution are strongly rejected for two ecologically important traits, body size and grinding area of the molar teeth. Instead, Ornstein–Uhlenbeck processes implying repeated, and sometimes rapid, attraction to distinct dietary adaptive peaks receive substantial support. Diversity-dependent rates of morphological evolution seem uncommon in clades, such as canids, that exhibit a pattern of replicated adaptive radiation. Instead, these clades might best be thought of as deterministic radiations in constrained Simpsonian subzones of a major adaptive zone. Support for adaptive peak models may be diagnostic of subzonal radiations. It remains to be seen whether early burst or ecological opportunity models can explain broader adaptive radiations, such as the evolution of higher taxa. PMID:25901311

  8. Genome-wide amplifications caused by chromosomal rearrangements play a major role in the adaptive evolution of natural yeast.

    PubMed Central

    Infante, Juan J; Dombek, Kenneth M; Rebordinos, Laureana; Cantoral, Jesús M; Young, Elton T

    2003-01-01

    The relative importance of gross chromosomal rearrangements to adaptive evolution has not been precisely defined. The Saccharomyces cerevisiae flor yeast strains offer significant advantages for the study of molecular evolution since they have recently evolved to a high degree of specialization in a very restrictive environment. Using DNA microarray technology, we have compared the genomes of two prominent variants of S. cerevisiae flor yeast strains. The strains differ from one another in the DNA copy number of 116 genomic regions that comprise 38% of the genome. In most cases, these regions are amplicons flanked by repeated sequences or other recombination hotspots previously described as regions where double-strand breaks occur. The presence of genes that confer specific characteristics to the flor yeast within the amplicons supports the role of chromosomal rearrangements as a major mechanism of adaptive evolution in S. cerevisiae. We propose that nonallelic interactions are enhanced by ethanol- and acetaldehyde-induced double-strand breaks in the chromosomal DNA, which are repaired by pathways that yield gross chromosomal rearrangements. This mechanism of chromosomal evolution could also account for the sexual isolation shown among the flor yeast. PMID:14704163

  9. [Evolution and systematics of nematodes based on molecular investigation].

    PubMed

    Okulewicz, Anna; Perec, Agnieszka

    2004-01-01

    Evolution and systematics of nematodes based on molecular investigation. The use of molecular phylogenetics to examine the interrelationships between animal parasites, free-living nematodes, and plant parasites versus traditional classification based on morphological-ecological characters was discussed and reviewed. Distinct differences were observed between parasitic nematodes and free-living ones. Within the former group, animal parasites turned out to be distinctly different from plant parasites. Using small subunit of ribosomal RNA gene sequence from a wide range of nematodes, there is a possibility to compare animal-parasitic, plant-parasitic and free-living taxa. Nowadays the parasitic nematodes expressed sequence tag (EST) project is currently generating sequence information to provide a new source of data to examine the evolutionary history of this taxonomic group. PMID:16859012

  10. Evolution of molecular crystal optical phonons near structural phase transitions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Michki, Nigel; Niessen, Katherine; Xu, Mengyang; Markelz, Andrea

    Molecular crystals are increasingly important photonic and electronic materials. For example organic semiconductors are lightweight compared to inorganic semiconductors and have inexpensive scale up processing with roll to roll printing. However their implementation is limited by their environmental sensitivity, in part arising from the weak intermolecular interactions of the crystal. These weak interactions result in optical phonons in the terahertz frequency range. We examine the evolution of intermolecular interactions near structural phase transitions by measuring the optical phonons as a function of temperature and crystal orientation using terahertz time-domain spectroscopy. The measured orientation dependence of the resonances provides an additional constraint for comparison of the observed spectra with the density functional calculations, enabling us to follow specific phonon modes. We observe crystal reorganization near 350 K for oxalic acid as it transforms from dihydrate to anhydrous form. We also report the first THz spectra for the molecular crystal fructose through its melting point.

  11. A Tale of Two Crocoducks: Creationist Misuses of Molecular Evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hofmann, James R.

    2014-10-01

    Although some creationist objections to evolutionary biology are simplistic and thus are easily refuted, when more technical arguments become widespread it is important for science educators to explain the relevant science in a straightforward manner. An interesting case study is provided by misguided allegations about how cytochrome c data pertain to molecular evolution. The most common of these misrepresentations bears a striking similarity to a particularly glaring misunderstanding of what should be expected of a transitional form in a fossil sequence. Although evangelist Kirk Cameron's ridiculous injunction of a hypothetical `crocoduck' as an example of a potential transitional form is frequently invoked to illustrate the ignorance of many critics of evolutionary science, a strikingly analogous argument was applied to cytochrome c data by biochemist Michael Denton in 1985. The details of this analogy are worth exploring to clarify the fallacy of the widely circulated molecular argument.

  12. Molecular basis of chill resistance adaptations in poikilothermic animals.

    PubMed

    Hayward, Scott A L; Manso, Bruno; Cossins, Andrew R

    2014-01-01

    Chill and freeze represent very different components of low temperature stress. Whilst the principal mechanisms of tissue damage and of acquired protection from freeze-induced effects are reasonably well established, those for chill damage and protection are not. Non-freeze cold exposure (i.e. chill) can lead to serious disruption to normal life processes, including disruption to energy metabolism, loss of membrane perm-selectivity and collapse of ion gradients, as well as loss of neuromuscular coordination. If the primary lesions are not relieved then the progressive functional debilitation can lead to death. Thus, identifying the underpinning molecular lesions can point to the means of building resistance to subsequent chill exposures. Researchers have focused on four specific lesions: (i) failure of neuromuscular coordination, (ii) perturbation of bio-membrane structure and adaptations due to altered lipid composition, (iii) protein unfolding, which might be mitigated by the induced expression of compatible osmolytes acting as 'chemical chaperones', (iv) or the induced expression of protein chaperones along with the suppression of general protein synthesis. Progress in all these potential mechanisms has been ongoing but not substantial, due in part to an over-reliance on straightforward correlative approaches. Also, few studies have intervened by adoption of single gene ablation, which provides much more direct and compelling evidence for the role of specific genes, and thus processes, in adaptive phenotypes. Another difficulty is the existence of multiple mechanisms, which often act together, thus resulting in compensatory responses to gene manipulations, which may potentially mask disruptive effects on the chill tolerance phenotype. Consequently, there is little direct evidence of the underpinning regulatory mechanisms leading to induced resistance to chill injury. Here, we review recent advances mainly in lower vertebrates and in arthropods, but increasingly

  13. Time in Redox Adaptation Processes: From Evolution to Hormesis

    PubMed Central

    Sthijns, Mireille M. J. P. E.; Weseler, Antje R.; Bast, Aalt; Haenen, Guido R. M. M.

    2016-01-01

    Life on Earth has to adapt to the ever changing environment. For example, due to introduction of oxygen in the atmosphere, an antioxidant network evolved to cope with the exposure to oxygen. The adaptive mechanisms of the antioxidant network, specifically the glutathione (GSH) system, are reviewed with a special focus on the time. The quickest adaptive response to oxidative stress is direct enzyme modification, increasing the GSH levels or activating the GSH-dependent protective enzymes. After several hours, a hormetic response is seen at the transcriptional level by up-regulating Nrf2-mediated expression of enzymes involved in GSH synthesis. In the long run, adaptations occur at the epigenetic and genomic level; for example, the ability to synthesize GSH by phototrophic bacteria. Apparently, in an adaptive hormetic response not only the dose or the compound, but also time, should be considered. This is essential for targeted interventions aimed to prevent diseases by successfully coping with changes in the environment e.g., oxidative stress. PMID:27690013

  14. From the ultrasonic to the infrared: molecular evolution and the sensory biology of bats.

    PubMed

    Jones, Gareth; Teeling, Emma C; Rossiter, Stephen J

    2013-01-01

    Great advances have been made recently in understanding the genetic basis of the sensory biology of bats. Research has focused on the molecular evolution of candidate sensory genes, genes with known functions [e.g., olfactory receptor (OR) genes] and genes identified from mutations associated with sensory deficits (e.g., blindness and deafness). For example, the FoxP2 gene, underpinning vocal behavior and sensorimotor coordination, has undergone diversification in bats, while several genes associated with audition show parallel amino acid substitutions in unrelated lineages of echolocating bats and, in some cases, in echolocating dolphins, representing a classic case of convergent molecular evolution. Vision genes encoding the photopigments rhodopsin and the long-wave sensitive opsin are functional in bats, while that encoding the short-wave sensitive opsin has lost functionality in rhinolophoid bats using high-duty cycle laryngeal echolocation, suggesting a sensory trade-off between investment in vision and echolocation. In terms of olfaction, bats appear to have a distinctive OR repertoire compared with other mammals, and a gene involved in signal transduction in the vomeronasal system has become non-functional in most bat species. Bitter taste receptors appear to have undergone a "birth-and death" evolution involving extensive gene duplication and loss, unlike genes coding for sweet and umami tastes that show conservation across most lineages but loss in vampire bats. Common vampire bats have also undergone adaptations for thermoperception, via alternative splicing resulting in the evolution of a novel heat-sensitive channel. The future for understanding the molecular basis of sensory biology is promising, with great potential for comparative genomic analyses, studies on gene regulation and expression, exploration of the role of alternative splicing in the generation of proteomic diversity, and linking genetic mechanisms to behavioral consequences.

  15. From the ultrasonic to the infrared: molecular evolution and the sensory biology of bats.

    PubMed

    Jones, Gareth; Teeling, Emma C; Rossiter, Stephen J

    2013-01-01

    Great advances have been made recently in understanding the genetic basis of the sensory biology of bats. Research has focused on the molecular evolution of candidate sensory genes, genes with known functions [e.g., olfactory receptor (OR) genes] and genes identified from mutations associated with sensory deficits (e.g., blindness and deafness). For example, the FoxP2 gene, underpinning vocal behavior and sensorimotor coordination, has undergone diversification in bats, while several genes associated with audition show parallel amino acid substitutions in unrelated lineages of echolocating bats and, in some cases, in echolocating dolphins, representing a classic case of convergent molecular evolution. Vision genes encoding the photopigments rhodopsin and the long-wave sensitive opsin are functional in bats, while that encoding the short-wave sensitive opsin has lost functionality in rhinolophoid bats using high-duty cycle laryngeal echolocation, suggesting a sensory trade-off between investment in vision and echolocation. In terms of olfaction, bats appear to have a distinctive OR repertoire compared with other mammals, and a gene involved in signal transduction in the vomeronasal system has become non-functional in most bat species. Bitter taste receptors appear to have undergone a "birth-and death" evolution involving extensive gene duplication and loss, unlike genes coding for sweet and umami tastes that show conservation across most lineages but loss in vampire bats. Common vampire bats have also undergone adaptations for thermoperception, via alternative splicing resulting in the evolution of a novel heat-sensitive channel. The future for understanding the molecular basis of sensory biology is promising, with great potential for comparative genomic analyses, studies on gene regulation and expression, exploration of the role of alternative splicing in the generation of proteomic diversity, and linking genetic mechanisms to behavioral consequences. PMID:23755015

  16. Protein change in plant evolution: tracing one thread connecting molecular and phenotypic diversity

    PubMed Central

    Bartlett, Madelaine E.; Whipple, Clinton J.

    2013-01-01

    Proteins change over the course of evolutionary time. New protein-coding genes and gene families emerge and diversify, ultimately affecting an organism’s phenotype and interactions with its environment. Here we survey the range of structural protein change observed in plants and review the role these changes have had in the evolution of plant form and function. Verified examples tying evolutionary change in protein structure to phenotypic change remain scarce. We will review the existing examples, as well as draw from investigations into domestication, and quantitative trait locus (QTL) cloning studies searching for the molecular underpinnings of natural variation. The evolutionary significance of many cloned QTL has not been assessed, but all the examples identified so far have begun to reveal the extent of protein structural diversity tolerated in natural systems. This molecular (and phenotypic) diversity could come to represent part of natural selection’s source material in the adaptive evolution of novel traits. Protein structure and function can change in many distinct ways, but the changes we identified in studies of natural diversity and protein evolution were predicted to fall primarily into one of six categories: altered active and binding sites; altered protein–protein interactions; altered domain content; altered activity as an activator or repressor; altered protein stability; and hypomorphic and hypermorphic alleles. There was also variability in the evolutionary scale at which particular changes were observed. Some changes were detected at both micro- and macroevolutionary timescales, while others were observed primarily at deep or shallow phylogenetic levels. This variation might be used to determine the trajectory of future investigations in structural molecular evolution. PMID:24124420

  17. Hepatitis C virus molecular evolution: transmission, disease progression and antiviral therapy.

    PubMed

    Preciado, Maria Victoria; Valva, Pamela; Escobar-Gutierrez, Alejandro; Rahal, Paula; Ruiz-Tovar, Karina; Yamasaki, Lilian; Vazquez-Chacon, Carlos; Martinez-Guarneros, Armando; Carpio-Pedroza, Juan Carlos; Fonseca-Coronado, Salvador; Cruz-Rivera, Mayra

    2014-11-21

    Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection represents an important public health problem worldwide. Reduction of HCV morbidity and mortality is a current challenge owned to several viral and host factors. Virus molecular evolution plays an important role in HCV transmission, disease progression and therapy outcome. The high degree of genetic heterogeneity characteristic of HCV is a key element for the rapid adaptation of the intrahost viral population to different selection pressures (e.g., host immune responses and antiviral therapy). HCV molecular evolution is shaped by different mechanisms including a high mutation rate, genetic bottlenecks, genetic drift, recombination, temporal variations and compartmentalization. These evolutionary processes constantly rearrange the composition of the HCV intrahost population in a staging manner. Remarkable advances in the understanding of the molecular mechanism controlling HCV replication have facilitated the development of a plethora of direct-acting antiviral agents against HCV. As a result, superior sustained viral responses have been attained. The rapidly evolving field of anti-HCV therapy is expected to broad its landscape even further with newer, more potent antivirals, bringing us one step closer to the interferon-free era.

  18. Hepatitis C virus molecular evolution: Transmission, disease progression and antiviral therapy

    PubMed Central

    Preciado, Maria Victoria; Valva, Pamela; Escobar-Gutierrez, Alejandro; Rahal, Paula; Ruiz-Tovar, Karina; Yamasaki, Lilian; Vazquez-Chacon, Carlos; Martinez-Guarneros, Armando; Carpio-Pedroza, Juan Carlos; Fonseca-Coronado, Salvador; Cruz-Rivera, Mayra

    2014-01-01

    Hepatitis C virus (HCV) infection represents an important public health problem worldwide. Reduction of HCV morbidity and mortality is a current challenge owned to several viral and host factors. Virus molecular evolution plays an important role in HCV transmission, disease progression and therapy outcome. The high degree of genetic heterogeneity characteristic of HCV is a key element for the rapid adaptation of the intrahost viral population to different selection pressures (e.g., host immune responses and antiviral therapy). HCV molecular evolution is shaped by different mechanisms including a high mutation rate, genetic bottlenecks, genetic drift, recombination, temporal variations and compartmentalization. These evolutionary processes constantly rearrange the composition of the HCV intrahost population in a staging manner. Remarkable advances in the understanding of the molecular mechanism controlling HCV replication have facilitated the development of a plethora of direct-acting antiviral agents against HCV. As a result, superior sustained viral responses have been attained. The rapidly evolving field of anti-HCV therapy is expected to broad its landscape even further with newer, more potent antivirals, bringing us one step closer to the interferon-free era. PMID:25473152

  19. Molecular mechanisms of Tetranychus urticae chemical adaptation in hop fields

    PubMed Central

    Piraneo, Tara G.; Bull, Jon; Morales, Mariany A.; Lavine, Laura C.; Walsh, Douglas B.; Zhu, Fang

    2015-01-01

    The two-spotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae Koch is a major pest that feeds on >1,100 plant species. Many perennial crops including hop (Humulus lupulus) are routinely plagued by T. urticae infestations. Hop is a specialty crop in Pacific Northwest states, where 99% of all U.S. hops are produced. To suppress T. urticae, growers often apply various acaricides. Unfortunately T. urticae has been documented to quickly develop resistance to these acaricides which directly cause control failures. Here, we investigated resistance ratios and distribution of multiple resistance-associated mutations in field collected T. urticae samples compared with a susceptible population. Our research revealed that a mutation in the cytochrome b gene (G126S) in 35% tested T. urticae populations and a mutation in the voltage-gated sodium channel gene (F1538I) in 66.7% populations may contribute resistance to bifenazate and bifenthrin, respectively. No mutations were detected in Glutamate-gated chloride channel subunits tested, suggesting target site insensitivity may not be important in our hop T. urticae resistance to abamectin. However, P450-mediated detoxification was observed and is a putative mechanism for abamectin resistance. Molecular mechanisms of T. urticae chemical adaptation in hopyards is imperative new information that will help growers develop effective and sustainable management strategies. PMID:26621458

  20. Molecular mechanisms of Tetranychus urticae chemical adaptation in hop fields.

    PubMed

    Piraneo, Tara G; Bull, Jon; Morales, Mariany A; Lavine, Laura C; Walsh, Douglas B; Zhu, Fang

    2015-01-01

    The two-spotted spider mite, Tetranychus urticae Koch is a major pest that feeds on >1,100 plant species. Many perennial crops including hop (Humulus lupulus) are routinely plagued by T. urticae infestations. Hop is a specialty crop in Pacific Northwest states, where 99% of all U.S. hops are produced. To suppress T. urticae, growers often apply various acaricides. Unfortunately T. urticae has been documented to quickly develop resistance to these acaricides which directly cause control failures. Here, we investigated resistance ratios and distribution of multiple resistance-associated mutations in field collected T. urticae samples compared with a susceptible population. Our research revealed that a mutation in the cytochrome b gene (G126S) in 35% tested T. urticae populations and a mutation in the voltage-gated sodium channel gene (F1538I) in 66.7% populations may contribute resistance to bifenazate and bifenthrin, respectively. No mutations were detected in Glutamate-gated chloride channel subunits tested, suggesting target site insensitivity may not be important in our hop T. urticae resistance to abamectin. However, P450-mediated detoxification was observed and is a putative mechanism for abamectin resistance. Molecular mechanisms of T. urticae chemical adaptation in hopyards is imperative new information that will help growers develop effective and sustainable management strategies. PMID:26621458

  1. Species-specific size expansion and molecular evolution of the oleosins in angiosperms.

    PubMed

    Liu, Qi; Sun, Yepeng; Su, Wujie; Yang, Jing; Liu, Xiuming; Wang, Yanfang; Wang, Fawei; Li, Haiyan; Li, Xiaokun

    2012-11-10

    Oleosins are hydrophobic plant proteins thought to be important for the formation of oil bodies, which supply energy for seed germination and subsequent seedling growth. To better understand the evolutionary history and diversity of the oleosin gene family in plants, especially angiosperms, we systematically investigated the molecular evolution of this family using eight representative angiosperm species. A total of 73 oleosin members were identified, with six members in each of four monocot species and a greater but variable number in the four eudicots. A phylogenetic analysis revealed that the angiosperm oleosin genes belonged to three monophyletic lineages. Species-specific gene duplications, caused mainly by segmental duplication, led to the great expansion of oleosin genes and occurred frequently in eudicots after the monocot-eudicot divergence. Functional divergence analyses indicate that significant amino acid site-specific selective constraints acted on the different clades of oleosins. Adaptive evolution analyses demonstrate that oleosin genes were subject to strong purifying selection after their species-specific duplications and that rapid evolution occurred with a high degree of evolutionary dynamics in the pollen-specific oleosin genes. In conclusion, this study serves as a foundation for genome-wide analyses of the oleosins. These findings provide insight into the function and evolution of this gene family in angiosperms and pave the way for studies in other plants.

  2. Species-specific size expansion and molecular evolution of the oleosins in angiosperms.

    PubMed

    Liu, Qi; Sun, Yepeng; Su, Wujie; Yang, Jing; Liu, Xiuming; Wang, Yanfang; Wang, Fawei; Li, Haiyan; Li, Xiaokun

    2012-11-10

    Oleosins are hydrophobic plant proteins thought to be important for the formation of oil bodies, which supply energy for seed germination and subsequent seedling growth. To better understand the evolutionary history and diversity of the oleosin gene family in plants, especially angiosperms, we systematically investigated the molecular evolution of this family using eight representative angiosperm species. A total of 73 oleosin members were identified, with six members in each of four monocot species and a greater but variable number in the four eudicots. A phylogenetic analysis revealed that the angiosperm oleosin genes belonged to three monophyletic lineages. Species-specific gene duplications, caused mainly by segmental duplication, led to the great expansion of oleosin genes and occurred frequently in eudicots after the monocot-eudicot divergence. Functional divergence analyses indicate that significant amino acid site-specific selective constraints acted on the different clades of oleosins. Adaptive evolution analyses demonstrate that oleosin genes were subject to strong purifying selection after their species-specific duplications and that rapid evolution occurred with a high degree of evolutionary dynamics in the pollen-specific oleosin genes. In conclusion, this study serves as a foundation for genome-wide analyses of the oleosins. These findings provide insight into the function and evolution of this gene family in angiosperms and pave the way for studies in other plants. PMID:22951805

  3. Molecular origins of rapid and continuous morphological evolution

    PubMed Central

    Fondon, John W.; Garner, Harold R.

    2004-01-01

    Mutations in cis-regulatory sequences have been implicated as being the predominant source of variation in morphological evolution. We offer a hypothesis that gene-associated tandem repeat expansions and contractions are a major source of phenotypic variation in evolution. Here, we describe a comparative genomic study of repetitive elements in developmental genes of 92 breeds of dogs. We find evidence for selection for divergence at coding repeat loci in the form of both elevated purity and extensive length polymorphism among different breeds. Variations in the number of repeats in the coding regions of the Alx-4 (aristaless-like 4) and Runx-2 (runt-related transcription factor 2) genes were quantitatively associated with significant differences in limb and skull morphology. We identified similar repeat length variation in the coding repeats of Runx-2, Twist, and Dlx-2 in several other species. The high frequency and incremental effects of repeat length mutations provide molecular explanations for swift, yet topologically conservative morphological evolution. PMID:15596718

  4. Integrating fossils with molecular phylogenies improves inference of trait evolution.

    PubMed

    Slater, Graham J; Harmon, Luke J; Alfaro, Michael E

    2012-12-01

    Comparative biologists often attempt to draw inferences about tempo and mode in evolution by comparing the fit of evolutionary models to phylogenetic comparative data consisting of a molecular phylogeny with branch lengths and trait measurements from extant taxa. These kinds of approaches ignore historical evidence for evolutionary pattern and process contained in the fossil record. In this article, we show through simulation that incorporation of fossil information dramatically improves our ability to distinguish among models of quantitative trait evolution using comparative data. We further suggest a novel Bayesian approach that allows fossil information to be integrated even when explicit phylogenetic hypotheses are lacking for extinct representatives of extant clades. By applying this approach to a comparative dataset comprising body sizes for caniform carnivorans, we show that incorporation of fossil information not only improves ancestral state estimates relative to those derived from extant taxa alone, but also results in preference of a model of evolution with trend toward large body size over alternative models such as Brownian motion or Ornstein-Uhlenbeck processes. Our approach highlights the importance of considering fossil information when making macroevolutionary inference, and provides a way to integrate the kind of sparse fossil information that is available to most evolutionary biologists.

  5. Molecular evolution of the transcription factor LEAFY in Brassicaceae.

    PubMed

    Baum, David A; Yoon, Ho-Sung; Oldham, Rebecca L

    2005-10-01

    LEAFY (LFY) is a DNA-binding transcription factor that regulates floral meristem identity. LFY is unusual among angiosperm developmental regulators because it is not part of an extended gene family. Recent expression studies and transgenic experiments have suggested that changes at the LFY locus might have played a role in the evolution of rosette flowering, a modified plant architecture that has evolved at least three times in Brassicaceae. Here we examined the sequences of LFY genes from 16 species of Brassicaceae to evaluate whether gene duplication and/or the shift to rosette flowering correlate with changes in the molecular evolution of LFY. We found evidence of gene duplication in four taxa, but phylogenetic analysis suggested that duplicate genes have generally not persisted through multiple speciation events. This result can be explained if LFY is prone to be lost by drift due to a low probability of subfunctionalization or neofunctionalization. Despite great heterogeneity in dN/dS ratios, duplicate genes show a significant tendency to have elevated dN/dS ratios. Rosette-flowering lineages also show elevated dN/dS ratios and two of the rosette-flowering taxa, Idahoa and Leavenworthia, have some radical amino acid substitutions that are candidates for having played a causal role in the evolution of rosette flowering.

  6. Molecular Fossils as Time Indicators for the Evolution of Diatoms.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rampen, S. W.; Schouten, S.; Muyzer, G.; Abbas, B.; Rowland, S. J.; Moldowan, M.; Sinninghe Damsté, J. S.

    2004-12-01

    Bacillariophyta (diatoms) are one of the most abundant divisions of phytoplankton, and contribute to almost 50% of the primary productivity of today's oceans. However, their ecological dominance is relatively young and little is known about the exact pace of their rapid evolution. DNA analyses on diatoms and the use of molecular clock calculations can help to reconstruct their evolution, but this molecular clock rate needs to be calibrated against the fossil record to determine the mutation rate. Until now, diatom silica skeletons have been used for reconstructing the evolution of diatoms, but their use is limited due to destruction by diagenesis. Molecular fossils may prove to be more useful for time reconstruction. To search for suitable compounds, we have analyzed both the lipid composition and 18S rRNA sequences of ca. 100 marine diatoms. This revealed that some specific phylogenetic clusters within the diatoms produce specific organic compounds, so-called diatom biomarkers. One group of diatom biomarkers are the C25 highly branched isoprenoid (HBI) alkenes (1,2). HBI biosynthesis evolved independently at least twice in the diatoms. The first group of HBI producers consists of the centric diatoms of the genus Rhizosolenia, the second group comprises pennate diatoms of the genera Haslea, Navicula and Pleurosigma. Based on the constructed phylogenetic tree it is likely that the HBI biosynthesis evolved first in the older group of centric diatoms (i.e. the Rhizosolenia genus). The fossil record was studied to determine the geological occurrence of C25 HBI alkenes, and this data set shows that HBI biosynthesis evolved ca. 91.5 My ago, so we can date the evolution of the genus Rizosolenia to ca. 91.5 My. With this information, we can now accurately predict the mutation rate of the 18S rDNA gene to 1% per 14.8 My for Rhizosolenia, which is substantially faster than the 1% per 18-26 My reported previously for diatoms in general. Another specific biomarker is 24

  7. New microRNAs in Drosophila--birth, death and cycles of adaptive evolution.

    PubMed

    Lyu, Yang; Shen, Yang; Li, Heng; Chen, Yuxin; Guo, Li; Zhao, Yixin; Hungate, Eric; Shi, Suhua; Wu, Chung-I; Tang, Tian

    2014-01-01

    The origin and evolution of new microRNAs (miRNAs) is important because they can impact the transcriptome broadly. As miRNAs can potentially emerge constantly and rapidly, their rates of birth and evolution have been extensively debated. However, most new miRNAs identified appear not to be biologically significant. After an extensive search, we identified 12 new miRNAs that emerged de novo in Drosophila melanogaster in the last 4 million years (Myrs) and have been evolving adaptively. Unexpectedly, even though they are adaptively evolving at birth, more than 94% of such new miRNAs disappear over time. They provide selective advantages, but only for a transient evolutionary period. After 30 Myrs, all surviving miRNAs make the transition from the adaptive phase of rapid evolution to the conservative phase of slow evolution, apparently becoming integrated into the transcriptional network. During this transition, the expression shifts from being tissue-specific, predominantly in testes and larval brain/gonads/imaginal discs, to a broader distribution in many other tissues. Interestingly, a measurable fraction (20-30%) of these conservatively evolving miRNAs experience "evolutionary rejuvenation" and begin to evolve rapidly again. These rejuvenated miRNAs then start another cycle of adaptive - conservative evolution. In conclusion, the selective advantages driving evolution of miRNAs are themselves evolving, and sometimes changing direction, which highlights the regulatory roles of miRNAs.

  8. Molecular Evolution of Peste des Petits Ruminants Virus

    PubMed Central

    Muniraju, Murali; Munir, Muhammad; Parthiban, AravindhBabu R.; Banyard, Ashley C.; Bao, Jingyue; Wang, Zhiliang; Ayebazibwe, Chrisostom; Ayelet, Gelagay; El Harrak, Mehdi; Mahapatra, Mana; Libeau, Geneviève; Batten, Carrie

    2014-01-01

    Despite safe and efficacious vaccines against peste des petits ruminants virus (PPRV), this virus has emerged as the cause of a highly contagious disease with serious economic consequences for small ruminant agriculture across Asia, the Middle East, and Africa. We used complete and partial genome sequences of all 4 lineages of the virus to investigate evolutionary and epidemiologic dynamics of PPRV. A Bayesian phylogenetic analysis of all PPRV lineages mapped the time to most recent common ancestor and initial divergence of PPRV to a lineage III isolate at the beginning of 20th century. A phylogeographic approach estimated the probability for root location of an ancestral PPRV and individual lineages as being Nigeria for PPRV, Senegal for lineage I, Nigeria/Ghana for lineage II, Sudan for lineage III, and India for lineage IV. Substitution rates are critical parameters for understanding virus evolution because restrictions in genetic variation can lead to lower adaptability and pathogenicity. PMID:25418782

  9. Molecular evolution of peste des petits ruminants virus.

    PubMed

    Muniraju, Murali; Munir, Muhammad; Parthiban, AravindhBabu R; Banyard, Ashley C; Bao, Jingyue; Wang, Zhiliang; Ayebazibwe, Chrisostom; Ayelet, Gelagay; El Harrak, Mehdi; Mahapatra, Mana; Libeau, Geneviève; Batten, Carrie; Parida, Satya

    2014-12-01

    Despite safe and efficacious vaccines against peste des petits ruminants virus (PPRV), this virus has emerged as the cause of a highly contagious disease with serious economic consequences for small ruminant agriculture across Asia, the Middle East, and Africa. We used complete and partial genome sequences of all 4 lineages of the virus to investigate evolutionary and epidemiologic dynamics of PPRV. A Bayesian phylogenetic analysis of all PPRV lineages mapped the time to most recent common ancestor and initial divergence of PPRV to a lineage III isolate at the beginning of 20th century. A phylogeographic approach estimated the probability for root location of an ancestral PPRV and individual lineages as being Nigeria for PPRV, Senegal for lineage I, Nigeria/Ghana for lineage II, Sudan for lineage III, and India for lineage IV. Substitution rates are critical parameters for understanding virus evolution because restrictions in genetic variation can lead to lower adaptability and pathogenicity. PMID:25418782

  10. Adaptive evolution of sexual systems in pedunculate barnacles.

    PubMed

    Yusa, Yoichi; Yoshikawa, Mai; Kitaura, Jun; Kawane, Masako; Ozaki, Yuki; Yamato, Shigeyuki; Høeg, Jens T

    2012-03-01

    How and why diverse sexual systems evolve are fascinating evolutionary questions, but few empirical studies have dealt with these questions in animals. Pedunculate (gooseneck) barnacles show such diversity, including simultaneous hermaphroditism, coexistence of dwarf males and hermaphrodites (androdioecy), and coexistence of dwarf males and females (dioecy). Here, we report the first phylogenetically controlled test of the hypothesis that the ultimate cause of the diverse sexual systems and presence of dwarf males in this group is limited mating opportunities for non-dwarf individuals, owing to mating in small groups. Within the pedunculate barnacle phylogeny, dwarf males and females have evolved repeatedly. Females are more likely to evolve in androdioecious than hermaphroditic populations, suggesting that evolution of dwarf males has preceded that of females in pedunculates. Both dwarf males and females are associated with a higher proportion of solitary individuals in the population, corroborating the hypothesis that limited mating opportunities have favoured evolution of these diverse sexual systems, which have puzzled biologists since Darwin.

  11. From lifetime to evolution: timescales of human gut microbiota adaptation.

    PubMed

    Quercia, Sara; Candela, Marco; Giuliani, Cristina; Turroni, Silvia; Luiselli, Donata; Rampelli, Simone; Brigidi, Patrizia; Franceschi, Claudio; Bacalini, Maria Giulia; Garagnani, Paolo; Pirazzini, Chiara

    2014-01-01

    Human beings harbor gut microbial communities that are essential to preserve human health. Molded by the human genome, the gut microbiota (GM) is an adaptive component of the human superorganisms that allows host adaptation at different timescales, optimizing host physiology from daily life to lifespan scales and human evolutionary history. The GM continuously changes from birth up to the most extreme limits of human life, reconfiguring its metagenomic layout in response to daily variations in diet or specific host physiological and immunological needs at different ages. On the other hand, the microbiota plasticity was strategic to face changes in lifestyle and dietary habits along the course of the recent evolutionary history, that has driven the passage from Paleolithic hunter-gathering societies to Neolithic agricultural farmers to modern Westernized societies. PMID:25408692

  12. From lifetime to evolution: timescales of human gut microbiota adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Quercia, Sara; Candela, Marco; Giuliani, Cristina; Turroni, Silvia; Luiselli, Donata; Rampelli, Simone; Brigidi, Patrizia; Franceschi, Claudio; Bacalini, Maria Giulia; Garagnani, Paolo; Pirazzini, Chiara

    2014-01-01

    Human beings harbor gut microbial communities that are essential to preserve human health. Molded by the human genome, the gut microbiota (GM) is an adaptive component of the human superorganisms that allows host adaptation at different timescales, optimizing host physiology from daily life to lifespan scales and human evolutionary history. The GM continuously changes from birth up to the most extreme limits of human life, reconfiguring its metagenomic layout in response to daily variations in diet or specific host physiological and immunological needs at different ages. On the other hand, the microbiota plasticity was strategic to face changes in lifestyle and dietary habits along the course of the recent evolutionary history, that has driven the passage from Paleolithic hunter-gathering societies to Neolithic agricultural farmers to modern Westernized societies. PMID:25408692

  13. Fecundity increase supports adaptive radiation hypothesis in spider web evolution

    PubMed Central

    Coddington, Jonathan A; Agnarsson, Ingi

    2009-01-01

    Identifying the mechanisms driving adaptive radiations is key to explaining the diversity of life. The extreme reliance of spiders upon silk for survival provides an exceptional system in which to link patterns of diversification to adaptive changes in silk use. Most of the world’s 41,000 species of spiders belong to two apical lineages of spiders that exhibit quite different silk ecologies, distinct from their ancestors. Orb spiders spin highly stereotyped webs that are suspended in air and utilize a chemical glue to make them adhesive. RTA clade spiders mostly abandoned silk capture webs altogether. We recently proposed that these two clades present very different evolutionary routes of achieving the same key innovation—escape from the constraints imposed by spinning webs that contain a relatively costly type of physically adhesive cribellate silk. Here, we test the prediction that orb and RTA clade spiders are not only more diverse, but also have higher fecundity than other spiders. We show that RTA clade spiders average 23% higher fecundity and orb spiders average 123% higher fecundity than their ancestors. This supports a functional link between the adaptive escape from cribellate silk and increased resource allocation to reproduction in spiders. PMID:20195450

  14. Fecundity increase supports adaptive radiation hypothesis in spider web evolution.

    PubMed

    Blackledge, Todd A; Coddington, Jonathan A; Agnarsson, Ingi

    2009-11-01

    Identifying the mechanisms driving adaptive radiations is key to explaining the diversity of life. The extreme reliance of spiders upon silk for survival provides an exceptional system in which to link patterns of diversification to adaptive changes in silk use. Most of the world's 41,000 species of spiders belong to two apical lineages of spiders that exhibit quite different silk ecologies, distinct from their ancestors. Orb spiders spin highly stereotyped webs that are suspended in air and utilize a chemical glue to make them adhesive. RTA clade spiders mostly abandoned silk capture webs altogether. We recently proposed that these two clades present very different evolutionary routes of achieving the same key innovation-escape from the constraints imposed by spinning webs that contain a relatively costly type of physically adhesive cribellate silk. Here, we test the prediction that orb and RTA clade spiders are not only more diverse, but also have higher fecundity than other spiders. We show that RTA clade spiders average 23% higher fecundity and orb spiders average 123% higher fecundity than their ancestors. This supports a functional link between the adaptive escape from cribellate silk and increased resource allocation to reproduction in spiders.

  15. Supernova feedback in molecular clouds: global evolution and dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Körtgen, Bastian; Seifried, Daniel; Banerjee, Robi; Vázquez-Semadeni, Enrique; Zamora-Avilés, Manuel

    2016-07-01

    We use magnetohydrodynamical simulations of converging warm neutral medium flows to analyse the formation and global evolution of magnetized and turbulent molecular clouds subject to supernova feedback from massive stars. We show that supernova feedback alone fails to disrupt entire, gravitationally bound, molecular clouds, but is able to disperse small-sized (˜10 pc) regions on time-scales of less than 1 Myr. Efficient radiative cooling of the supernova remnant as well as strong compression of the surrounding gas result in non-persistent energy and momentum input from the supernovae. However, if the time between subsequent supernovae is short and they are clustered, large hot bubbles form that disperse larger regions of the parental cloud. On longer time-scales, supernova feedback increases the amount of gas with moderate temperatures (T ≈ 300-3000 K). Despite its inability to disrupt molecular clouds, supernova feedback leaves a strong imprint on the star formation process. We find an overall reduction of the star formation efficiency by a factor of 2 and of the star formation rate by roughly factors of 2-4.

  16. Hepatitis A virus: host interactions, molecular epidemiology and evolution.

    PubMed

    Vaughan, Gilberto; Goncalves Rossi, Livia Maria; Forbi, Joseph C; de Paula, Vanessa S; Purdy, Michael A; Xia, Guoliang; Khudyakov, Yury E

    2014-01-01

    Infection with hepatitis A virus (HAV) is the commonest viral cause of liver disease and presents an important public health problem worldwide. Several unique HAV properties and molecular mechanisms of its interaction with host were recently discovered and should aid in clarifying the pathogenesis of hepatitis A. Genetic characterization of HAV strains have resulted in the identification of different genotypes and subtypes, which exhibit a characteristic worldwide distribution. Shifts in HAV endemicity occurring in different parts of the world, introduction of genetically diverse strains from geographically distant regions, genotype displacement observed in some countries and population expansion detected in the last decades of the 20th century using phylogenetic analysis are important factors contributing to the complex dynamics of HAV infections worldwide. Strong selection pressures, some of which, like usage of deoptimized codons, are unique to HAV, limit genetic variability of the virus. Analysis of subgenomic regions has been proven useful for outbreak investigations. However, sharing short sequences among epidemiologically unrelated strains indicates that specific identification of HAV strains for molecular surveillance can be achieved only using whole-genome sequences. Here, we present up-to-date information on the HAV molecular epidemiology and evolution, and highlight the most relevant features of the HAV-host interactions.

  17. The predictability of molecular evolution during functional innovation.

    PubMed

    Blank, Diana; Wolf, Luise; Ackermann, Martin; Silander, Olin K

    2014-02-25

    Determining the molecular changes that give rise to functional innovations is a major unresolved problem in biology. The paucity of examples has served as a significant hindrance in furthering our understanding of this process. Here we used experimental evolution with the bacterium Escherichia coli to quantify the molecular changes underlying functional innovation in 68 independent instances ranging over 22 different metabolic functions. Using whole-genome sequencing, we show that the relative contribution of regulatory and structural mutations depends on the cellular context of the metabolic function. In addition, we find that regulatory mutations affect genes that act in pathways relevant to the novel function, whereas structural mutations affect genes that act in unrelated pathways. Finally, we use population genetic modeling to show that the relative contributions of regulatory and structural mutations during functional innovation may be affected by population size. These results provide a predictive framework for the molecular basis of evolutionary innovation, which is essential for anticipating future evolutionary trajectories in the face of rapid environmental change.

  18. Microbial community succession mechanism coupling with adaptive evolution of adsorption performance in chalcopyrite bioleaching.

    PubMed

    Feng, Shoushuai; Yang, Hailin; Wang, Wu

    2015-09-01

    The community succession mechanism of Acidithiobacillus sp. coupling with adaptive evolution of adsorption performance were systematically investigated. Specifically, the μmax of attached and free cells was increased and peak time was moved ahead, indicating both cell growth of Acidithiobacillus ferrooxidans and Acidithiobacillus thiooxidans was promoted. In the mixed strains system, the domination courses of A. thiooxidans was dramatically shortened from 22th day to 15th day, although community structure finally approached to the normal system. Compared to A. ferrooxidans, more positive effects of adaptive evolution on cell growth of A. thiooxidans were shown in either single or mixed strains system. Moreover, higher concentrations of sulfate and ferric ions indicated that both sulfur and iron metabolism was enhanced, especially of A. thiooxidans. Consistently, copper ion production was improved from 65.5 to 88.5 mg/L. This new adaptive evolution and community succession mechanism may be useful for guiding similar bioleaching processes.

  19. Phylogeography and molecular evolution of potato virus Y.

    PubMed

    Cuevas, José M; Delaunay, Agnès; Visser, Johan C; Bellstedt, Dirk U; Jacquot, Emmanuel; Elena, Santiago F

    2012-01-01

    Potato virus Y (PVY) is an important plant pathogen, whose host range includes economically important crops such as potato, tobacco, tomato, and pepper. PVY presents three main strains (PVY(O), PVY(N) and PVY(C)) and several recombinant forms. PVY has a worldwide distribution, yet the mechanisms that promote and maintain its population structure and genetic diversity are still unclear. In this study, we used a pool of 77 complete PVY genomes from isolates collected worldwide. After removing the effect of recombination in our data set, we used bayesian techniques to study the influence of geography and host species in both PVY population structure and dynamics. We have also performed selection and covariation analyses to identify evolutionarily relevant amino acid residues. Our results show that both geographic and host-driven adaptations explain PVY diversification. Furthermore, purifying selection is the main force driving PVY evolution, although some indications of positive selection accounted for the diversification of the different strains. Interestingly, the analysis of P3N-PIPO, a recently described gene in potyviruses, seems to show a variable length among the isolates analyzed, and this variability is explained, in part, by host-driven adaptation. PMID:22655074

  20. Evolution of Heat Sensors Drove Shifts in Thermosensation between Xenopus Species Adapted to Different Thermal Niches.

    PubMed

    Saito, Shigeru; Ohkita, Masashi; Saito, Claire T; Takahashi, Kenji; Tominaga, Makoto; Ohta, Toshio

    2016-05-20

    Temperature is one of the most critical environmental factors affecting survival, and thus species that inhabit different thermal niches have evolved thermal sensitivities suitable for their respective habitats. During the process of shifting thermal niches, various types of genes expressed in diverse tissues, including those of the peripheral to central nervous systems, are potentially involved in the evolutionary changes in thermosensation. To elucidate the molecular mechanisms behind the evolution of thermosensation, thermal responses were compared between two species of clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis) adapted to different thermal environments. X. laevis was much more sensitive to heat stimulation than X. tropicalis at the behavioral and neural levels. The activity and sensitivity of the heat-sensing TRPA1 channel were higher in X. laevis compared with those of X. tropicalis The thermal responses of another heat-sensing channel, TRPV1, also differed between the two Xenopus species. The species differences in Xenopus TRPV1 heat responses were largely determined by three amino acid substitutions located in the first three ankyrin repeat domains, known to be involved in the regulation of rat TRPV1 activity. In addition, Xenopus TRPV1 exhibited drastic species differences in sensitivity to capsaicin, contained in chili peppers, between the two Xenopus species. Another single amino acid substitution within Xenopus TRPV1 is responsible for this species difference, which likely alters the neural and behavioral responses to capsaicin. These combined subtle amino acid substitutions in peripheral thermal sensors potentially serve as a driving force for the evolution of thermal and chemical sensation. PMID:27022021

  1. Adaptive laboratory evolution of ethanologenic Zymomonas mobilis strain tolerant to furfural and acetic acid inhibitors.

    PubMed

    Shui, Zong-Xia; Qin, Han; Wu, Bo; Ruan, Zhi-yong; Wang, Lu-shang; Tan, Fu-Rong; Wang, Jing-Li; Tang, Xiao-Yu; Dai, Li-Chun; Hu, Guo-Quan; He, Ming-Xiong

    2015-07-01

    Furfural and acetic acid from lignocellulosic hydrolysates are the prevalent inhibitors to Zymomonas mobilis during cellulosic ethanol production. Developing a strain tolerant to furfural or acetic acid inhibitors is difficul by using rational engineering strategies due to poor understanding of their underlying molecular mechanisms. In this study, strategy of adaptive laboratory evolution (ALE) was used for development of a furfural and acetic acid-tolerant strain. After three round evolution, four evolved mutants (ZMA7-2, ZMA7-3, ZMF3-2, and ZMF3-3) that showed higher growth capacity were successfully obtained via ALE method. Based on the results of profiling of cell growth, glucose utilization, ethanol yield, and activity of key enzymes, two desired strains, ZMA7-2 and ZMF3-3, were achieved, which showed higher tolerance under 7 g/l acetic acid and 3 g/l furfural stress condition. Especially, it is the first report of Z. mobilis strain that could tolerate higher furfural. The best strain, Z. mobilis ZMF3-3, has showed 94.84% theoretical ethanol yield under 3-g/l furfural stress condition, and the theoretical ethanol yield of ZM4 is only 9.89%. Our study also demonstrated that ALE method might also be used as a powerful metabolic engineering tool for metabolic engineering in Z. mobilis. Furthermore, the two best strains could be used as novel host for further metabolic engineering in cellulosic ethanol or future biorefinery. Importantly, the two strains may also be used as novel-tolerant model organisms for the genetic mechanism on the "omics" level, which will provide some useful information for inverse metabolic engineering.

  2. Evolution of Heat Sensors Drove Shifts in Thermosensation between Xenopus Species Adapted to Different Thermal Niches.

    PubMed

    Saito, Shigeru; Ohkita, Masashi; Saito, Claire T; Takahashi, Kenji; Tominaga, Makoto; Ohta, Toshio

    2016-05-20

    Temperature is one of the most critical environmental factors affecting survival, and thus species that inhabit different thermal niches have evolved thermal sensitivities suitable for their respective habitats. During the process of shifting thermal niches, various types of genes expressed in diverse tissues, including those of the peripheral to central nervous systems, are potentially involved in the evolutionary changes in thermosensation. To elucidate the molecular mechanisms behind the evolution of thermosensation, thermal responses were compared between two species of clawed frogs (Xenopus laevis and Xenopus tropicalis) adapted to different thermal environments. X. laevis was much more sensitive to heat stimulation than X. tropicalis at the behavioral and neural levels. The activity and sensitivity of the heat-sensing TRPA1 channel were higher in X. laevis compared with those of X. tropicalis The thermal responses of another heat-sensing channel, TRPV1, also differed between the two Xenopus species. The species differences in Xenopus TRPV1 heat responses were largely determined by three amino acid substitutions located in the first three ankyrin repeat domains, known to be involved in the regulation of rat TRPV1 activity. In addition, Xenopus TRPV1 exhibited drastic species differences in sensitivity to capsaicin, contained in chili peppers, between the two Xenopus species. Another single amino acid substitution within Xenopus TRPV1 is responsible for this species difference, which likely alters the neural and behavioral responses to capsaicin. These combined subtle amino acid substitutions in peripheral thermal sensors potentially serve as a driving force for the evolution of thermal and chemical sensation.

  3. Cosmic radiation and evolution of life on earth: Roles of environment, adaptation and selection

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Todd, P.

    1994-10-01

    The role of ionizing radiation in general, and cosmic radiation in particular, in the evolution of organisms on the earth by adaptation and natural selection is considered in a series of questions: (1) Are there times during the evolution of the earth and of life when genetic material could be exposed to heavy ion radiation? (2) Throughout the course of chemical and biological evolution on the earth, what fraction of environmental mutagenesis could be attributable to cosmic and/or solar ionizing radiation? (3) Is ionizing radiation an agent of adaptation or selection, or both? (4) What can the cladistics of the evolution of genetic repair tell us about the global history of genotoxic selection pressures? (How much genetic diversity can be attributed to the selection of radiation-damage repair processes?

  4. Adaptive Evolution Is Substantially Impeded by Hill-Robertson Interference in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Castellano, David; Coronado-Zamora, Marta; Campos, Jose L; Barbadilla, Antonio; Eyre-Walker, Adam

    2016-02-01

    Hill-Robertson interference (HRi) is expected to reduce the efficiency of natural selection when two or more linked selected sites do not segregate freely, but no attempt has been done so far to quantify the overall impact of HRi on the rate of adaptive evolution for any given genome. In this work, we estimate how much HRi impedes the rate of adaptive evolution in the coding genome of Drosophila melanogaster. We compiled a data set of 6,141 autosomal protein-coding genes from Drosophila, from which polymorphism levels in D. melanogaster and divergence out to D. yakuba were estimated. The rate of adaptive evolution was calculated using a derivative of the McDonald-Kreitman test that controls for slightly deleterious mutations. We find that the rate of adaptive amino acid substitution at a given position of the genome is positively correlated to both the rate of recombination and the mutation rate, and negatively correlated to the gene density of the region. These correlations are robust to controlling for each other, for synonymous codon bias and for gene functions related to immune response and testes. We show that HRi diminishes the rate of adaptive evolution by approximately 27%. Interestingly, genes with low mutation rates embedded in gene poor regions lose approximately 17% of their adaptive substitutions whereas genes with high mutation rates embedded in gene rich regions lose approximately 60%. We conclude that HRi hampers the rate of adaptive evolution in Drosophila and that the variation in recombination, mutation, and gene density along the genome affects the HRi effect.

  5. The Lineage-Specific Evolution of Aquaporin Gene Clusters Facilitated Tetrapod Terrestrial Adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Finn, Roderick Nigel; Chauvigné, François; Hlidberg, Jón Baldur; Cutler, Christopher P.; Cerdà, Joan

    2014-01-01

    A major physiological barrier for aquatic organisms adapting to terrestrial life is dessication in the aerial environment. This barrier was nevertheless overcome by the Devonian ancestors of extant Tetrapoda, but the origin of specific molecular mechanisms that solved this water problem remains largely unknown. Here we show that an ancient aquaporin gene cluster evolved specifically in the sarcopterygian lineage, and subsequently diverged into paralogous forms of AQP2, -5, or -6 to mediate water conservation in extant Tetrapoda. To determine the origin of these apomorphic genomic traits, we combined aquaporin sequencing from jawless and jawed vertebrates with broad taxon assembly of >2,000 transcripts amongst 131 deuterostome genomes and developed a model based upon Bayesian inference that traces their convergent roots to stem subfamilies in basal Metazoa and Prokaryota. This approach uncovered an unexpected diversity of aquaporins in every lineage investigated, and revealed that the vertebrate superfamily consists of 17 classes of aquaporins (Aqp0 - Aqp16). The oldest orthologs associated with water conservation in modern Tetrapoda are traced to a cluster of three aqp2-like genes in Actinistia that likely arose >500 Ma through duplication of an aqp0-like gene present in a jawless ancestor. In sea lamprey, we show that aqp0 first arose in a protocluster comprised of a novel aqp14 paralog and a fused aqp01 gene. To corroborate these findings, we conducted phylogenetic analyses of five syntenic nuclear receptor subfamilies, which, together with observations of extensive genome rearrangements, support the coincident loss of ancestral aqp2-like orthologs in Actinopterygii. We thus conclude that the divergence of sarcopterygian-specific aquaporin gene clusters was permissive for the evolution of water conservation mechanisms that facilitated tetrapod terrestrial adaptation. PMID:25426855

  6. Increased acid resistance of the archaeon, Metallosphaera sedula by adaptive laboratory evolution.

    PubMed

    Ai, Chenbing; McCarthy, Samuel; Eckrich, Valerie; Rudrappa, Deepak; Qiu, Guanzhou; Blum, Paul

    2016-10-01

    Extremely thermoacidophilic members of the Archaea such as the lithoautotroph, Metallosphaera sedula, are among the most acid resistant forms of life and are of great relevance in bioleaching. Here, adaptive laboratory evolution was used to enhance the acid resistance of this organism while genomics and transcriptomics were used in an effort to understand the molecular basis for this trait. Unlike the parental strain, the evolved derivative, M. sedula SARC-M1, grew well at pH of 0.90. Enargite (Cu3AsS4) bioleaching conducted at pH 1.20 demonstrated SARC-M1 leached 23.78 % more copper relative to the parental strain. Genome re-sequencing identified two mutations in SARC-M1 including a nonsynonymous mutation in Msed_0408 (an amino acid permease) and a deletion in pseudogene Msed_1517. Transcriptomic studies by RNA-seq of wild type and evolved strains at various low pH values demonstrated there was enhanced expression of genes in M. sedula SARC-M1 encoding membrane complexes and enzymes that extrude protons or that catalyze proton-consuming reactions. In addition, M. sedula SARC-M1 exhibited reduced expression of genes encoding enzymes that catalyze proton-generating reactions. These unique genomic and transcriptomic features support a model for increased acid resistance arising from enhanced control over cytoplasmic pH. PMID:27520549

  7. Adaptive evolution of tight junction protein claudin-14 in echolocating whales.

    PubMed

    Xu, Huihui; Liu, Yang; He, Guimei; Rossiter, Stephen J; Zhang, Shuyi

    2013-11-10

    Toothed whales and bats have independently evolved specialized ultrasonic hearing for echolocation. Recent findings have suggested that several genes including Prestin, Tmc1, Pjvk and KCNQ4 appear to have undergone molecular adaptations associated with the evolution of this ultrasonic hearing in mammals. Here we studied the hearing gene Cldn14, which encodes the claudin-14 protein and is a member of tight junction proteins that functions in the organ of Corti in the inner ear to maintain a cationic gradient between endolymph and perilymph. Particular mutations in human claudin-14 give rise to non-syndromic deafness, suggesting an essential role in hearing. Our results uncovered two bursts of positive selection, one in the ancestral branch of all toothed whales and a second in the branch leading to the delphinid, phocoenid and ziphiid whales. These two branches are the same as those previously reported to show positive selection in the Prestin gene. Furthermore, as with Prestin, the estimated hearing frequencies of whales significantly correlate with numbers of branch-wise non-synonymous substitutions in Cldn14, but not with synonymous changes. However, in contrast to Prestin, we found no evidence of positive selection in bats. Our findings from Cldn14, and comparisons with Prestin, strongly implicate multiple loci in the acquisition of echolocation in cetaceans, but also highlight possible differences in the evolutionary route to echolocation taken by whales and bats.

  8. MOLECULAR GAS EVOLUTION ACROSS A SPIRAL ARM IN M51

    SciTech Connect

    Egusa, Fumi; Scoville, Nick; Koda, Jin

    2011-01-10

    We present sensitive and high angular resolution CO(1-0) data obtained by the Combined Array for Research in Millimeter-wave Astronomy observations toward the nearby grand-design spiral galaxy M51. The angular resolution of 0.''7 corresponds to 30 pc, which is similar to the typical size of giant molecular clouds (GMCs), and the sensitivity is also high enough to detect typical GMCs. Within the 1' field of view centered on a spiral arm, a number of GMC-scale structures are detected as clumps. However, only a few clumps are found to be associated with each giant molecular association (GMA) and more than 90% of the total flux is resolved out in our data. Considering the high sensitivity and resolution of our data, these results indicate that GMAs are not mere confusion with GMCs but plausibly smooth structures. In addition, we have found that the most massive clumps are located downstream of the spiral arm, which suggests that they are at a later stage of molecular cloud evolution across the arm and plausibly are cores of GMAs. By comparing with H{alpha} and Pa{alpha} images, most of these cores are found to have nearby star-forming regions. We thus propose an evolutionary scenario for the interstellar medium, in which smaller molecular clouds collide to form smooth GMAs at spiral arm regions and then star formation is triggered in the GMA cores. Our new CO data have revealed the internal structure of GMAs at GMC scales, finding the most massive substructures on the downstream side of the arm in close association with the brightest H II regions.

  9. Temperate phages both mediate and drive adaptive evolution in pathogen biofilms

    PubMed Central

    Davies, Emily V.; James, Chloe E.; Williams, David; O’Brien, Siobhan; Fothergill, Joanne L.; Haldenby, Sam; Paterson, Steve; Winstanley, Craig

    2016-01-01

    Temperate phages drive genomic diversification in bacterial pathogens. Phage-derived sequences are more common in pathogenic than nonpathogenic taxa and are associated with changes in pathogen virulence. High abundance and mobilization of temperate phages within hosts suggests that temperate phages could promote within-host evolution of bacterial pathogens. However, their role in pathogen evolution has not been experimentally tested. We experimentally evolved replicate populations of Pseudomonas aeruginosa with or without a community of three temperate phages active in cystic fibrosis (CF) lung infections, including the transposable phage, ɸ4, which is closely related to phage D3112. Populations grew as free-floating biofilms in artificial sputum medium, mimicking sputum of CF lungs where P. aeruginosa is an important pathogen and undergoes evolutionary adaptation and diversification during chronic infection. Although bacterial populations adapted to the biofilm environment in both treatments, population genomic analysis revealed that phages altered both the trajectory and mode of evolution. Populations evolving with phages exhibited a greater degree of parallel evolution and faster selective sweeps than populations without phages. Phage ɸ4 integrated randomly into the bacterial chromosome, but integrations into motility-associated genes and regulators of quorum sensing systems essential for virulence were selected in parallel, strongly suggesting that these insertional inactivation mutations were adaptive. Temperate phages, and in particular transposable phages, are therefore likely to facilitate adaptive evolution of bacterial pathogens within hosts. PMID:27382184

  10. Experiments on the role of deleterious mutations as stepping stones in adaptive evolution

    PubMed Central

    Covert, Arthur W.; Lenski, Richard E.; Wilke, Claus O.; Ofria, Charles

    2013-01-01

    Many evolutionary studies assume that deleterious mutations necessarily impede adaptive evolution. However, a later mutation that is conditionally beneficial may interact with a deleterious predecessor before it is eliminated, thereby providing access to adaptations that might otherwise be inaccessible. It is unknown whether such sign-epistatic recoveries are inconsequential events or an important factor in evolution, owing to the difficulty of monitoring the effects and fates of all mutations during experiments with biological organisms. Here, we used digital organisms to compare the extent of adaptive evolution in populations when deleterious mutations were disallowed with control populations in which such mutations were allowed. Significantly higher fitness levels were achieved over the long term in the control populations because some of the deleterious mutations served as stepping stones across otherwise impassable fitness valleys. As a consequence, initially deleterious mutations facilitated the evolution of complex, beneficial functions. We also examined the effects of disallowing neutral mutations, of varying the mutation rate, and of sexual recombination. Populations evolving without neutral mutations were able to leverage deleterious and compensatory mutation pairs to overcome, at least partially, the absence of neutral mutations. Substantially raising or lowering the mutation rate reduced or eliminated the long-term benefit of deleterious mutations, but introducing recombination did not. Our work demonstrates that deleterious mutations can play an important role in adaptive evolution under at least some conditions. PMID:23918358

  11. Experiments on the role of deleterious mutations as stepping stones in adaptive evolution.

    PubMed

    Covert, Arthur W; Lenski, Richard E; Wilke, Claus O; Ofria, Charles

    2013-08-20

    Many evolutionary studies assume that deleterious mutations necessarily impede adaptive evolution. However, a later mutation that is conditionally beneficial may interact with a deleterious predecessor before it is eliminated, thereby providing access to adaptations that might otherwise be inaccessible. It is unknown whether such sign-epistatic recoveries are inconsequential events or an important factor in evolution, owing to the difficulty of monitoring the effects and fates of all mutations during experiments with biological organisms. Here, we used digital organisms to compare the extent of adaptive evolution in populations when deleterious mutations were disallowed with control populations in which such mutations were allowed. Significantly higher fitness levels were achieved over the long term in the control populations because some of the deleterious mutations served as stepping stones across otherwise impassable fitness valleys. As a consequence, initially deleterious mutations facilitated the evolution of complex, beneficial functions. We also examined the effects of disallowing neutral mutations, of varying the mutation rate, and of sexual recombination. Populations evolving without neutral mutations were able to leverage deleterious and compensatory mutation pairs to overcome, at least partially, the absence of neutral mutations. Substantially raising or lowering the mutation rate reduced or eliminated the long-term benefit of deleterious mutations, but introducing recombination did not. Our work demonstrates that deleterious mutations can play an important role in adaptive evolution under at least some conditions.

  12. Anticipatory dynamics of biological systems: from molecular quantum states to evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Igamberdiev, Abir U.

    2015-08-01

    Living systems possess anticipatory behaviour that is based on the flexibility of internal models generated by the system's embedded description. The idea was suggested by Aristotle and is explicitly introduced to theoretical biology by Rosen. The possibility of holding the embedded internal model is grounded in the principle of stable non-equilibrium (Bauer). From the quantum mechanical view, this principle aims to minimize energy dissipation in expense of long relaxation times. The ideas of stable non-equilibrium were developed by Liberman who viewed living systems as subdivided into the quantum regulator and the molecular computer supporting coherence of the regulator's internal quantum state. The computational power of the cell molecular computer is based on the possibility of molecular rearrangements according to molecular addresses. In evolution, the anticipatory strategies are realized both as a precession of phylogenesis by ontogenesis (Berg) and as the anticipatory search of genetic fixation of adaptive changes that incorporates them into the internal model of genetic system. We discuss how the fundamental ideas of anticipation can be introduced into the basic foundations of theoretical biology.

  13. Brain evolution and development: adaptation, allometry and constraint.

    PubMed

    Montgomery, Stephen H; Mundy, Nicholas I; Barton, Robert A

    2016-09-14

    Phenotypic traits are products of two processes: evolution and development. But how do these processes combine to produce integrated phenotypes? Comparative studies identify consistent patterns of covariation, or allometries, between brain and body size, and between brain components, indicating the presence of significant constraints limiting independent evolution of separate parts. These constraints are poorly understood, but in principle could be either developmental or functional. The developmental constraints hypothesis suggests that individual components (brain and body size, or individual brain components) tend to evolve together because natural selection operates on relatively simple developmental mechanisms that affect the growth of all parts in a concerted manner. The functional constraints hypothesis suggests that correlated change reflects the action of selection on distributed functional systems connecting the different sub-components, predicting more complex patterns of mosaic change at the level of the functional systems and more complex genetic and developmental mechanisms. These hypotheses are not mutually exclusive but make different predictions. We review recent genetic and neurodevelopmental evidence, concluding that functional rather than developmental constraints are the main cause of the observed patterns.

  14. Brain evolution and development: adaptation, allometry and constraint

    PubMed Central

    Barton, Robert A.

    2016-01-01

    Phenotypic traits are products of two processes: evolution and development. But how do these processes combine to produce integrated phenotypes? Comparative studies identify consistent patterns of covariation, or allometries, between brain and body size, and between brain components, indicating the presence of significant constraints limiting independent evolution of separate parts. These constraints are poorly understood, but in principle could be either developmental or functional. The developmental constraints hypothesis suggests that individual components (brain and body size, or individual brain components) tend to evolve together because natural selection operates on relatively simple developmental mechanisms that affect the growth of all parts in a concerted manner. The functional constraints hypothesis suggests that correlated change reflects the action of selection on distributed functional systems connecting the different sub-components, predicting more complex patterns of mosaic change at the level of the functional systems and more complex genetic and developmental mechanisms. These hypotheses are not mutually exclusive but make different predictions. We review recent genetic and neurodevelopmental evidence, concluding that functional rather than developmental constraints are the main cause of the observed patterns. PMID:27629025

  15. Brain evolution and development: adaptation, allometry and constraint.

    PubMed

    Montgomery, Stephen H; Mundy, Nicholas I; Barton, Robert A

    2016-09-14

    Phenotypic traits are products of two processes: evolution and development. But how do these processes combine to produce integrated phenotypes? Comparative studies identify consistent patterns of covariation, or allometries, between brain and body size, and between brain components, indicating the presence of significant constraints limiting independent evolution of separate parts. These constraints are poorly understood, but in principle could be either developmental or functional. The developmental constraints hypothesis suggests that individual components (brain and body size, or individual brain components) tend to evolve together because natural selection operates on relatively simple developmental mechanisms that affect the growth of all parts in a concerted manner. The functional constraints hypothesis suggests that correlated change reflects the action of selection on distributed functional systems connecting the different sub-components, predicting more complex patterns of mosaic change at the level of the functional systems and more complex genetic and developmental mechanisms. These hypotheses are not mutually exclusive but make different predictions. We review recent genetic and neurodevelopmental evidence, concluding that functional rather than developmental constraints are the main cause of the observed patterns. PMID:27629025

  16. Adaptive evolution of sexual systems in pedunculate barnacles

    PubMed Central

    Yusa, Yoichi; Yoshikawa, Mai; Kitaura, Jun; Kawane, Masako; Ozaki, Yuki; Yamato, Shigeyuki; Høeg, Jens T.

    2012-01-01

    How and why diverse sexual systems evolve are fascinating evolutionary questions, but few empirical studies have dealt with these questions in animals. Pedunculate (gooseneck) barnacles show such diversity, including simultaneous hermaphroditism, coexistence of dwarf males and hermaphrodites (androdioecy), and coexistence of dwarf males and females (dioecy). Here, we report the first phylogenetically controlled test of the hypothesis that the ultimate cause of the diverse sexual systems and presence of dwarf males in this group is limited mating opportunities for non-dwarf individuals, owing to mating in small groups. Within the pedunculate barnacle phylogeny, dwarf males and females have evolved repeatedly. Females are more likely to evolve in androdioecious than hermaphroditic populations, suggesting that evolution of dwarf males has preceded that of females in pedunculates. Both dwarf males and females are associated with a higher proportion of solitary individuals in the population, corroborating the hypothesis that limited mating opportunities have favoured evolution of these diverse sexual systems, which have puzzled biologists since Darwin. PMID:21881138

  17. Adaptation to marginal habitats by evolution of increased phenotypic plasticity.

    PubMed

    Chevin, L-M; Lande, R

    2011-07-01

    In an island population receiving immigrants from a larger continental population, gene flow causes maladaptation, decreasing mean fitness and producing continued directional selection to restore the local mean phenotype to its optimum. We show that this causes higher plasticity to evolve on the island than on the continent at migration-selection equilibrium, assuming genetic variation of reaction norms is such that phenotypic variance is higher on the island, where phenotypes are not canalized. For a species distributed continuously in space along an environmental gradient, higher plasticity evolves at the edges of the geographic range, and in environments where phenotypes are not canalized. Constant or evolving partially adaptive plasticity also alleviates maladaptation owing to gene flow in a heterogeneous environment and produces higher mean fitness and larger population size in marginal populations, preventing them from becoming sinks and facilitating invasion of new habitats. Our results shed light on the widely observed involvement of partially adaptive plasticity in phenotypic clines, and on the mechanisms causing geographic variation in plasticity.

  18. Adaptive specializations, social exchange, and the evolution of human intelligence

    PubMed Central

    Cosmides, Leda; Barrett, H. Clark; Tooby, John

    2010-01-01

    Blank-slate theories of human intelligence propose that reasoning is carried out by general-purpose operations applied uniformly across contents. An evolutionary approach implies a radically different model of human intelligence. The task demands of different adaptive problems select for functionally specialized problem-solving strategies, unleashing massive increases in problem-solving power for ancestrally recurrent adaptive problems. Because exchange can evolve only if cooperators can detect cheaters, we hypothesized that the human mind would be equipped with a neurocognitive system specialized for reasoning about social exchange. Whereas humans perform poorly when asked to detect violations of most conditional rules, we predicted and found a dramatic spike in performance when the rule specifies an exchange and violations correspond to cheating. According to critics, people's uncanny accuracy at detecting violations of social exchange rules does not reflect a cheater detection mechanism, but extends instead to all rules regulating when actions are permitted (deontic conditionals). Here we report experimental tests that falsify these theories by demonstrating that deontic rules as a class do not elicit the search for violations. We show that the cheater detection system functions with pinpoint accuracy, searching for violations of social exchange rules only when these are likely to reveal the presence of someone who intends to cheat. It does not search for violations of social exchange rules when these are accidental, when they do not benefit the violator, or when the situation would make cheating difficult. PMID:20445099

  19. Molecular adaptation of photoprotection: triplet states in light-harvesting proteins.

    PubMed

    Gall, Andrew; Berera, Rudi; Alexandre, Maxime T A; Pascal, Andrew A; Bordes, Luc; Mendes-Pinto, Maria M; Andrianambinintsoa, Sandra; Stoitchkova, Katerina V; Marin, Alessandro; Valkunas, Leonas; Horton, Peter; Kennis, John T M; van Grondelle, Rienk; Ruban, Alexander; Robert, Bruno

    2011-08-17

    The photosynthetic light-harvesting systems of purple bacteria and plants both utilize specific carotenoids as quenchers of the harmful (bacterio)chlorophyll triplet states via triplet-triplet energy transfer. Here, we explore how the binding of carotenoids to the different types of light-harvesting proteins found in plants and purple bacteria provides adaptation in this vital photoprotective function. We show that the creation of the carotenoid triplet states in the light-harvesting complexes may occur without detectable conformational changes, in contrast to that found for carotenoids in solution. However, in plant light-harvesting complexes, the triplet wavefunction is shared between the carotenoids and their adjacent chlorophylls. This is not observed for the antenna proteins of purple bacteria, where the triplet is virtually fully located on the carotenoid molecule. These results explain the faster triplet-triplet transfer times in plant light-harvesting complexes. We show that this molecular mechanism, which spreads the location of the triplet wavefunction through the pigments of plant light-harvesting complexes, results in the absence of any detectable chlorophyll triplet in these complexes upon excitation, and we propose that it emerged as a photoprotective adaptation during the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis.

  20. Unfolding Thermodynamics of Cysteine-Rich Proteins and Molecular Thermal-Adaptation of Marine Ciliates

    PubMed Central

    Cazzolli, Giorgia; Škrbić, Tatjana; Guella, Graziano; Faccioli, Pietro

    2013-01-01

    Euplotes nobilii and Euplotes raikovi are phylogenetically closely allied species of marine ciliates, living in polar and temperate waters, respectively. Their evolutional relation and the sharply different temperatures of their natural environments make them ideal organisms to investigate thermal-adaptation. We perform a comparative study of the thermal unfolding of disulfide-rich protein pheromones produced by these ciliates. Recent circular dichroism (CD) measurements have shown that the two psychrophilic (E. nobilii) and mesophilic (E. raikovi) protein families are characterized by very different melting temperatures, despite their close structural homology. The enhanced thermal stability of the E. raikovi pheromones is realized notwithstanding the fact that these proteins form, as a rule, a smaller number of disulfide bonds. We perform Monte Carlo (MC) simulations in a structure-based coarse-grained (CG) model to show that the higher stability of the E. raikovi pheromones is due to the lower locality of the disulfide bonds, which yields a lower entropy increase in the unfolding process. Our study suggests that the higher stability of the mesophilic E. raikovi phermones is not mainly due to the presence of a strongly hydrophobic core, as it was proposed in the literature. In addition, we argue that the molecular adaptation of these ciliates may have occurred from cold to warm, and not from warm to cold. To provide a testable prediction, we identify a point-mutation of an E. nobilii pheromone that should lead to an unfolding temperature typical of that of E. raikovi pheromones. PMID:24970199

  1. A test of neutral molecular evolution based on nucleotide data.

    PubMed

    Hudson, R R; Kreitman, M; Aguadé, M

    1987-05-01

    The neutral theory of molecular evolution predicts that regions of the genome that evolve at high rates, as revealed by interspecific DNA sequence comparisons, will also exhibit high levels of polymorphism within species. We present here a conservative statistical test of this prediction based on a constant-rate neutral model. The test requires data from an interspecific comparison of at least two regions of the genome and data on levels of intraspecific polymorphism in the same regions from at least one species. The model is rejected for data from the region encompassing the Adh locus and the 5' flanking sequence of Drosophila melanogaster and Drosophila sechellia. The data depart from the model in a direction that is consistent with the presence of balanced polymorphism in the coding region.

  2. Endoreplication: a molecular trick during animal neuron evolution.

    PubMed

    Mandrioli, Mauro; Mola, Lucrezia; Cuoghi, Barbara; Sonetti, Dario

    2010-06-01

    The occurrence of endoreplication has been repeatedly reported in many organisms, including protists, plants, worms, arthropods, molluscs, fishes, and mammals. As a general rule, cells possessing endoreplicated genomes are large-sized and highly metabolically active. Endoreplication has not been frequently reported in neuronal cells that are typically considered to be fully differentiated and non-dividing, and which normally contain a diploid genome. Despite this general statement, various papers indicate that giant neurons in molluscs, as well as supramedullary and hypothalamic magnocellular neurons in fishes, contain DNA amounts larger than 2C. In order to study this issue in greater detail here, we review the available data about endoreplication in invertebrate and vertebrate neurons, and discuss its possible functional significance. As a whole, endoreplication seems to be a sort of molecular trick used by neurons in response to the high functional demands that they experience during evolution.

  3. Host-plant adaptation drives the parallel evolution of reproductive isolation.

    PubMed

    Nosil, Patrik; Crespi, Bernard J; Sandoval, Cristina P

    2002-05-23

    Parallel evolution of similar traits in independent populations that inhabit ecologically similar environments strongly implicates natural selection as the cause of evolution. Parallel speciation is a special form of parallel evolution where traits that determine reproductive isolation evolve repeatedly, in closely related populations, as by-products of adaptation to ecological conditions. The outcome of such parallel evolution is that ecologically divergent pairs of populations exhibit greater levels of reproductive isolation than ecologically similar pairs of populations of a similar or younger age. The parallel evolution of reproductive isolation provides strong evidence for natural selection in the process of speciation, but only one conclusive example from nature is known. Populations of the walking-stick insect Timema cristinae that use different host-plant species have diverged in body size and shape, host preference, behaviour and the relative frequency of two highly cryptic colour-pattern morphs. Here we report that divergent selection for host adaptation, and not genetic drift, has promoted the parallel evolution of sexual isolation in this species. Our findings represent a clear demonstration that host-plant adaptation can play a crucial and repeatable role in the early stages of speciation.

  4. Evolution of highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1 viruses in Egypt indicating progressive adaptation.

    PubMed

    Arafa, A; Suarez, D; Kholosy, S G; Hassan, M K; Nasef, S; Selim, A; Dauphin, G; Kim, M; Yilma, J; Swayne, D; Aly, M M

    2012-10-01

    Highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) virus of the H5N1 subtype was first diagnosed in poultry in Egypt in 2006, and since then the disease became enzootic in poultry throughout the country, affecting the poultry industry and village poultry as well as infecting humans. Vaccination has been used as a part of the control strategy to help to control the disease. Epidemiological data with sequence analysis of H5N1 viruses is important to link the mechanism of virus evolution in Egypt. This study describes the evolutionary pattern of Egyptian H5N1 viruses based on molecular characterization for the isolates collected from commercial poultry farms and village poultry from 2006 to 2011. Genetic analysis of the hemagglutinin (HA) gene was done by sequencing of the full-length H5 gene. The epidemiological pattern of disease outbreaks in Egyptian poultry farms seems to be seasonal with no specific geographic distribution across the country. The molecular epidemiological data revealed that there are two major groups of viruses: the classic group of subclade 2.2.1 and a variant group of 2.2.1.1. The classic group is prevailing mainly in village poultry and had fewer mutations compared to the originally introduced virus in 2006. Since 2009, this group has started to be transmitted back to commercial sectors. The variant group emerged by late 2007, was prevalent mainly in vaccinated commercial poultry, mutated continuously at a higher rate until 2010, and started to decline in 2011. Genetic analysis of the neuraminidase (NA) gene and the other six internal genes indicates a grouping of the Egyptian viruses similar to that obtained using the HA gene, with no obvious reassortments. The results of this study indicate that HPAI-H5N1 viruses are progressively evolving and adapting in Egypt and continue to acquire new mutations every season. PMID:22760662

  5. Bio++: efficient extensible libraries and tools for computational molecular evolution.

    PubMed

    Guéguen, Laurent; Gaillard, Sylvain; Boussau, Bastien; Gouy, Manolo; Groussin, Mathieu; Rochette, Nicolas C; Bigot, Thomas; Fournier, David; Pouyet, Fanny; Cahais, Vincent; Bernard, Aurélien; Scornavacca, Céline; Nabholz, Benoît; Haudry, Annabelle; Dachary, Loïc; Galtier, Nicolas; Belkhir, Khalid; Dutheil, Julien Y

    2013-08-01

    Efficient algorithms and programs for the analysis of the ever-growing amount of biological sequence data are strongly needed in the genomics era. The pace at which new data and methodologies are generated calls for the use of pre-existing, optimized-yet extensible-code, typically distributed as libraries or packages. This motivated the Bio++ project, aiming at developing a set of C++ libraries for sequence analysis, phylogenetics, population genetics, and molecular evolution. The main attractiveness of Bio++ is the extensibility and reusability of its components through its object-oriented design, without compromising the computer-efficiency of the underlying methods. We present here the second major release of the libraries, which provides an extended set of classes and methods. These extensions notably provide built-in access to sequence databases and new data structures for handling and manipulating sequences from the omics era, such as multiple genome alignments and sequencing reads libraries. More complex models of sequence evolution, such as mixture models and generic n-tuples alphabets, are also included.

  6. Molecular determinants of enzyme cold adaptation: comparative structural and computational studies of cold- and warm-adapted enzymes.

    PubMed

    Papaleo, Elena; Tiberti, Matteo; Invernizzi, Gaetano; Pasi, Marco; Ranzani, Valeria

    2011-11-01

    The identification of molecular mechanisms underlying enzyme cold adaptation is a hot-topic both for fundamental research and industrial applications. In the present contribution, we review the last decades of structural computational investigations on cold-adapted enzymes in comparison to their warm-adapted counterparts. Comparative sequence and structural studies allow the definition of a multitude of adaptation strategies. Different enzymes carried out diverse mechanisms to adapt to low temperatures, so that a general theory for enzyme cold adaptation cannot be formulated. However, some common features can be traced in dynamic and flexibility properties of these enzymes, as well as in their intra- and inter-molecular interaction networks. Interestingly, the current data suggest that a family-centered point of view is necessary in the comparative analyses of cold- and warm-adapted enzymes. In fact, enzymes belonging to the same family or superfamily, thus sharing at least the three-dimensional fold and common features of the functional sites, have evolved similar structural and dynamic patterns to overcome the detrimental effects of low temperatures.

  7. Molecular determinants of enzyme cold adaptation: comparative structural and computational studies of cold- and warm-adapted enzymes.

    PubMed

    Papaleo, Elena; Tiberti, Matteo; Invernizzi, Gaetano; Pasi, Marco; Ranzani, Valeria

    2011-11-01

    The identification of molecular mechanisms underlying enzyme cold adaptation is a hot-topic both for fundamental research and industrial applications. In the present contribution, we review the last decades of structural computational investigations on cold-adapted enzymes in comparison to their warm-adapted counterparts. Comparative sequence and structural studies allow the definition of a multitude of adaptation strategies. Different enzymes carried out diverse mechanisms to adapt to low temperatures, so that a general theory for enzyme cold adaptation cannot be formulated. However, some common features can be traced in dynamic and flexibility properties of these enzymes, as well as in their intra- and inter-molecular interaction networks. Interestingly, the current data suggest that a family-centered point of view is necessary in the comparative analyses of cold- and warm-adapted enzymes. In fact, enzymes belonging to the same family or superfamily, thus sharing at least the three-dimensional fold and common features of the functional sites, have evolved similar structural and dynamic patterns to overcome the detrimental effects of low temperatures. PMID:21827423

  8. The genomic signatures of Shigella evolution, adaptation and geographical spread.

    PubMed

    The, Hao Chung; Thanh, Duy Pham; Holt, Kathryn E; Thomson, Nicholas R; Baker, Stephen

    2016-04-01

    Shigella spp. are some of the key pathogens responsible for the global burden of diarrhoeal disease. These facultative intracellular bacteria belong to the family Enterobacteriaceae, together with other intestinal pathogens, such as Escherichia coli and Salmonella spp. The genus Shigella comprises four different species, each consisting of several serogroups, all of which show phenotypic similarity, including invasive pathogenicity. DNA sequencing suggests that this similarity results from the convergent evolution of different Shigella spp. founders. Here, we review the evolutionary relationships between Shigella spp. and E . coli, and we highlight how the genomic plasticity of these bacteria and their acquisition of a distinctive virulence plasmid have enabled the development of such highly specialized pathogens. Furthermore, we discuss the insights that genotyping and whole-genome sequencing have provided into the phylogenetics and intercontinental spread of Shigella spp. PMID:26923111

  9. The genomic signatures of Shigella evolution, adaptation and geographical spread.

    PubMed

    The, Hao Chung; Thanh, Duy Pham; Holt, Kathryn E; Thomson, Nicholas R; Baker, Stephen

    2016-04-01

    Shigella spp. are some of the key pathogens responsible for the global burden of diarrhoeal disease. These facultative intracellular bacteria belong to the family Enterobacteriaceae, together with other intestinal pathogens, such as Escherichia coli and Salmonella spp. The genus Shigella comprises four different species, each consisting of several serogroups, all of which show phenotypic similarity, including invasive pathogenicity. DNA sequencing suggests that this similarity results from the convergent evolution of different Shigella spp. founders. Here, we review the evolutionary relationships between Shigella spp. and E . coli, and we highlight how the genomic plasticity of these bacteria and their acquisition of a distinctive virulence plasmid have enabled the development of such highly specialized pathogens. Furthermore, we discuss the insights that genotyping and whole-genome sequencing have provided into the phylogenetics and intercontinental spread of Shigella spp.

  10. The evolution of adhesiveness as a social adaptation.

    PubMed

    Garcia, Thomas; Doulcier, Guilhem; De Monte, Silvia

    2015-11-27

    Cellular adhesion is a key ingredient to sustain collective functions of microbial aggregates. Here, we investigate the evolutionary origins of adhesion and the emergence of groups of genealogically unrelated cells with a game-theoretical model. The considered adhesiveness trait is costly, continuous and affects both group formation and group-derived benefits. The formalism of adaptive dynamics reveals two evolutionary stable strategies, at each extreme on the axis of adhesiveness. We show that cohesive groups can evolve by small mutational steps, provided the population is already endowed with a minimum adhesiveness level. Assortment between more adhesive types, and in particular differential propensities to leave a fraction of individuals ungrouped at the end of the aggregation process, can compensate for the cost of increased adhesiveness. We also discuss the change in the social nature of more adhesive mutations along evolutionary trajectories, and find that altruism arises before directly beneficial behavior, despite being the most challenging form of cooperation.

  11. Diversity and adaptive evolution of Saccharomyces wine yeast: a review.

    PubMed

    Marsit, Souhir; Dequin, Sylvie

    2015-11-01

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae and related species, the main workhorses of wine fermentation, have been exposed to stressful conditions for millennia, potentially resulting in adaptive differentiation. As a result, wine yeasts have recently attracted considerable interest for studying the evolutionary effects of domestication. The widespread use of whole-genome sequencing during the last decade has provided new insights into the biodiversity, population structure, phylogeography and evolutionary history of wine yeasts. Comparisons between S. cerevisiae isolates from various origins have indicated that a variety of mechanisms, including heterozygosity, nucleotide and structural variations, introgressions, horizontal gene transfer and hybridization, contribute to the genetic and phenotypic diversity of S. cerevisiae. This review will summarize the current knowledge on the diversity and evolutionary history of wine yeasts, focusing on the domestication fingerprints identified in these strains.

  12. Diversity and adaptive evolution of Saccharomyces wine yeast: a review

    PubMed Central

    Marsit, Souhir; Dequin, Sylvie

    2015-01-01

    Saccharomyces cerevisiae and related species, the main workhorses of wine fermentation, have been exposed to stressful conditions for millennia, potentially resulting in adaptive differentiation. As a result, wine yeasts have recently attracted considerable interest for studying the evolutionary effects of domestication. The widespread use of whole-genome sequencing during the last decade has provided new insights into the biodiversity, population structure, phylogeography and evolutionary history of wine yeasts. Comparisons between S. cerevisiae isolates from various origins have indicated that a variety of mechanisms, including heterozygosity, nucleotide and structural variations, introgressions, horizontal gene transfer and hybridization, contribute to the genetic and phenotypic diversity of S. cerevisiae. This review will summarize the current knowledge on the diversity and evolutionary history of wine yeasts, focusing on the domestication fingerprints identified in these strains. PMID:26205244

  13. Molecular Evolution of the Neural Crest Regulatory Network in Ray-Finned Fish.

    PubMed

    Kratochwil, Claudius F; Geissler, Laura; Irisarri, Iker; Meyer, Axel

    2015-11-01

    Gene regulatory networks (GRN) are central to developmental processes. They are composed of transcription factors and signaling molecules orchestrating gene expression modules that tightly regulate the development of organisms. The neural crest (NC) is a multipotent cell population that is considered a key innovation of vertebrates. Its derivatives contribute to shaping the astounding morphological diversity of jaws, teeth, head skeleton, or pigmentation. Here, we study the molecular evolution of the NC GRN by analyzing patterns of molecular divergence for a total of 36 genes in 16 species of bony fishes. Analyses of nonsynonymous to synonymous substitution rate ratios (dN/dS) support patterns of variable selective pressures among genes deployed at different stages of NC development, consistent with the developmental hourglass model. Model-based clustering techniques of sequence features support the notion of extreme conservation of NC-genes across the entire network. Our data show that most genes are under strong purifying selection that is maintained throughout ray-finned fish evolution. Late NC development genes reveal a pattern of increased constraints in more recent lineages. Additionally, seven of the NC-genes showed signs of relaxation of purifying selection in the famously species-rich lineage of cichlid fishes. This suggests that NC genes might have played a role in the adaptive radiation of cichlids by granting flexibility in the development of NC-derived traits-suggesting an important role for NC network architecture during the diversification in vertebrates. PMID:26475317

  14. Molecular evolution of the infrared sensory gene TRPA1 in snakes and implications for functional studies.

    PubMed

    Geng, Jie; Liang, Dan; Jiang, Ke; Zhang, Peng

    2011-01-01

    TRPA1 is a calcium ion channel protein recently identified as the infrared receptor in pit organ-containing snakes. Therefore, understanding the molecular evolution of TRPA1 may help to illuminate the origin of "heat vision" in snakes and reveal the molecular mechanism of infrared sensitivity for TRPA1. To this end, we sequenced the infrared sensory gene TRPA1 in 24 snake species, representing nine snake families and multiple non-snake outgroups. We found that TRPA1 is under strong positive selection in the pit-bearing snakes studied, but not in other non-pit snakes and non-snake vertebrates. As a comparison, TRPV1, a gene closely related to TRPA1, was found to be under strong purifying selection in all the species studied, with no difference in the strength of selection between pit-bearing snakes and non-pit snakes. This finding demonstrates that the adaptive evolution of TRPA1 specifically occurred within the pit-bearing snakes and may be related to the functional modification for detecting infrared radiation. In addition, by comparing the TRPA1 protein sequences, we identified 11 amino acid sites that were diverged in pit-bearing snakes but conserved in non-pit snakes and other vertebrates, 21 sites that were diverged only within pit-vipers but conserved in the remaining snakes. These specific amino acid substitutions may be potentially functional important for infrared sensing.

  15. Computer System for Analysis of Molecular Evolution Modes (SAMEM): analysis of molecular evolution modes at deep inner branches of the phylogenetic tree.

    PubMed

    Gunbin, Konstantin V; Suslov, Valentin V; Genaev, Mikhail A; Afonnikov, Dmitry A

    SAMEM (System for Analysis of Molecular Evolution Modes), a web-based pipeline system for inferring modes of molecular evolution in genes and proteins (http://pixie.bionet.nsc.ru/samem/), is presented. Pipeline 1 performs analyses of protein-coding gene evolution; pipeline 2 performs analyses of protein evolution; pipeline 3 prepares datasets of genes and/or proteins, performs their primary analysis, and builds BLOSUM matrices; pipeline 4 checks if these genes really are protein-coding. Pipeline 1 has an all-new feature, which allows the user to obtain K(R)/K(C) estimates using several different methods. An important feature of pipeline 2 is an original method for analyzing the rates of amino acid substitutions at the branches of a phylogenetic tree. The method is based on Markov modeling and a non-parametric permutation test, which compares expected and observed frequencies of amino acid substitutions, and infers the modes of molecular evolution at deep inner branches.

  16. Molecular genetics and evolution of disease resistance in cereals.

    PubMed

    Krattinger, Simon G; Keller, Beat

    2016-10-01

    Contents 320 I. 320 II. 321 III. 321 IV. 322 V. 324 VI. 328 VII. 329 330 References 330 SUMMARY: Cereal crops produce a large part of the globally consumed food and feed. Because of the constant presence of devastating pathogens, the molecular characterization of disease resistance is a major research area and highly relevant for breeding. There has been recent and accelerating progress in the understanding of three distinct resistance mechanisms in cereals: resistance conferred by plasma membrane-localized receptor proteins; race-specific resistance conferred by intracellular immune receptors; and quantitative disease resistance. Intracellular immune receptors provide a particularly rich source for evolutionary studies, and have, for example, resulted in the recent discovery of a novel detection mechanism based on integrated decoy domains. Evolutionary studies have also revealed the origins of active resistance genes in both wild progenitors of today's cereals as well as in cultivated forms. In addition, independent evolution of orthologous genes in related cereals has resulted in resistance to different pathogen species. Quantitative resistance genes have been best characterized in wheat. The quantitative resistance genes identified so far in wheat encode transporter proteins or unusual kinase proteins. The recent discoveries in these three different resistance mechanisms have contributed to the basic molecular understanding of cereal immunity against pathogens and have suggested novel applications for resistance breeding.

  17. Molecular genetics and evolution of disease resistance in cereals.

    PubMed

    Krattinger, Simon G; Keller, Beat

    2016-10-01

    Contents 320 I. 320 II. 321 III. 321 IV. 322 V. 324 VI. 328 VII. 329 330 References 330 SUMMARY: Cereal crops produce a large part of the globally consumed food and feed. Because of the constant presence of devastating pathogens, the molecular characterization of disease resistance is a major research area and highly relevant for breeding. There has been recent and accelerating progress in the understanding of three distinct resistance mechanisms in cereals: resistance conferred by plasma membrane-localized receptor proteins; race-specific resistance conferred by intracellular immune receptors; and quantitative disease resistance. Intracellular immune receptors provide a particularly rich source for evolutionary studies, and have, for example, resulted in the recent discovery of a novel detection mechanism based on integrated decoy domains. Evolutionary studies have also revealed the origins of active resistance genes in both wild progenitors of today's cereals as well as in cultivated forms. In addition, independent evolution of orthologous genes in related cereals has resulted in resistance to different pathogen species. Quantitative resistance genes have been best characterized in wheat. The quantitative resistance genes identified so far in wheat encode transporter proteins or unusual kinase proteins. The recent discoveries in these three different resistance mechanisms have contributed to the basic molecular understanding of cereal immunity against pathogens and have suggested novel applications for resistance breeding. PMID:27427289

  18. The molecular evolution of the vertebrate behavioural repertoire

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    How the sophisticated vertebrate behavioural repertoire evolved remains a major question in biology. The behavioural repertoire encompasses the set of individual behavioural components that an organism uses when adapting and responding to changes in its external world. Although unicellular organisms, invertebrates and vertebrates share simple reflex responses, the fundamental mechanisms that resulted in the complexity and sophistication that is characteristic of vertebrate behaviours have only recently been examined. A series of behavioural genetic experiments in mice and humans support a theory that posited the importance of synapse proteome expansion in generating complexity in the behavioural repertoire. Genome duplication events, approximately 550 Ma, produced expansion in the synapse proteome that resulted in increased complexity in synapse signalling mechanisms that regulate components of the behavioural repertoire. The experiments demonstrate the importance to behaviour of the gene duplication events, the diversification of paralogues and sequence constraint. They also confirm the significance of comparative proteomic and genomic studies that identified the molecular origins of synapses in unicellular eukaryotes and the vertebrate expansion in proteome complexity. These molecular mechanisms have general importance for understanding the repertoire of behaviours in different species and for human behavioural disorders arising from synapse gene mutations. PMID:26598730

  19. Molecular tools and bumble bees: revealing hidden details of ecology and evolution in a model system.

    PubMed

    Woodard, S Hollis; Lozier, Jeffrey D; Goulson, David; Williams, Paul H; Strange, James P; Jha, Shalene

    2015-06-01

    Bumble bees are a longstanding model system for studies on behaviour, ecology and evolution, due to their well-studied social lifestyle, invaluable role as wild and managed pollinators, and ubiquity and diversity across temperate ecosystems. Yet despite their importance, many aspects of bumble bee biology have remained enigmatic until the rise of the genetic and, more recently, genomic eras. Here, we review and synthesize new insights into the ecology, evolution and behaviour of bumble bees that have been gained using modern genetic and genomic techniques. Special emphasis is placed on four areas of bumble bee biology: the evolution of eusociality in this group, population-level processes, large-scale evolutionary relationships and patterns, and immunity and resistance to pesticides. We close with a prospective on the future of bumble bee genomics research, as this rapidly advancing field has the potential to further revolutionize our understanding of bumble bees, particularly in regard to adaptation and resilience. Worldwide, many bumble bee populations are in decline. As such, throughout the review, connections are drawn between new molecular insights into bumble bees and our understanding of the causal factors involved in their decline. Ongoing and potential applications to bumble bee management and conservation are also included to demonstrate how genetics- and genomics-enabled research aids in the preservation of this threatened group.

  20. Molecular tools and bumble bees: revealing hidden details of ecology and evolution in a model system.

    PubMed

    Woodard, S Hollis; Lozier, Jeffrey D; Goulson, David; Williams, Paul H; Strange, James P; Jha, Shalene

    2015-06-01

    Bumble bees are a longstanding model system for studies on behaviour, ecology and evolution, due to their well-studied social lifestyle, invaluable role as wild and managed pollinators, and ubiquity and diversity across temperate ecosystems. Yet despite their importance, many aspects of bumble bee biology have remained enigmatic until the rise of the genetic and, more recently, genomic eras. Here, we review and synthesize new insights into the ecology, evolution and behaviour of bumble bees that have been gained using modern genetic and genomic techniques. Special emphasis is placed on four areas of bumble bee biology: the evolution of eusociality in this group, population-level processes, large-scale evolutionary relationships and patterns, and immunity and resistance to pesticides. We close with a prospective on the future of bumble bee genomics research, as this rapidly advancing field has the potential to further revolutionize our understanding of bumble bees, particularly in regard to adaptation and resilience. Worldwide, many bumble bee populations are in decline. As such, throughout the review, connections are drawn between new molecular insights into bumble bees and our understanding of the causal factors involved in their decline. Ongoing and potential applications to bumble bee management and conservation are also included to demonstrate how genetics- and genomics-enabled research aids in the preservation of this threatened group. PMID:25865395

  1. Family Wide Molecular Adaptations to Underground Life in African Mole-Rats Revealed by Phylogenomic Analysis

    PubMed Central

    Davies, Kalina T.J.; Bennett, Nigel C.; Tsagkogeorga, Georgia; Rossiter, Stephen J.; Faulkes, Christopher G.

    2015-01-01

    During their evolutionary radiation, mammals have colonized diverse habitats. Arguably the subterranean niche is the most inhospitable of these, characterized by reduced oxygen, elevated carbon dioxide, absence of light, scarcity of food, and a substrate that is energetically costly to burrow through. Of all lineages to have transitioned to a subterranean niche, African mole-rats are one of the most successful. Much of their ecological success can be attributed to a diet of plant storage organs, which has allowed them to colonize climatically varied habitats across sub-Saharan Africa, and has probably contributed to the evolution of their diverse social systems. Yet despite their many remarkable phenotypic specializations, little is known about molecular adaptations underlying these traits. To address this, we sequenced the transcriptomes of seven mole-rat taxa, including three solitary species, and combined new sequences with existing genomic data sets. Alignments of more than 13,000 protein-coding genes encompassed, for the first time, all six genera and the full spectrum of ecological and social variation in the clade. We detected positive selection within the mole-rat clade and along ancestral branches in approximately 700 genes including loci associated with tumorigenesis, aging, morphological development, and sociality. By combining these results with gene ontology annotation and protein–protein networks, we identified several clusters of functionally related genes. This family wide analysis of molecular evolution in mole-rats has identified a suite of positively selected genes, deepening our understanding of the extreme phenotypic traits exhibited by this group. PMID:26318402

  2. Family Wide Molecular Adaptations to Underground Life in African Mole-Rats Revealed by Phylogenomic Analysis.

    PubMed

    Davies, Kalina T J; Bennett, Nigel C; Tsagkogeorga, Georgia; Rossiter, Stephen J; Faulkes, Christopher G

    2015-12-01

    During their evolutionary radiation, mammals have colonized diverse habitats. Arguably the subterranean niche is the most inhospitable of these, characterized by reduced oxygen, elevated carbon dioxide, absence of light, scarcity of food, and a substrate that is energetically costly to burrow through. Of all lineages to have transitioned to a subterranean niche, African mole-rats are one of the most successful. Much of their ecological success can be attributed to a diet of plant storage organs, which has allowed them to colonize climatically varied habitats across sub-Saharan Africa, and has probably contributed to the evolution of their diverse social systems. Yet despite their many remarkable phenotypic specializations, little is known about molecular adaptations underlying these traits. To address this, we sequenced the transcriptomes of seven mole-rat taxa, including three solitary species, and combined new sequences with existing genomic data sets. Alignments of more than 13,000 protein-coding genes encompassed, for the first time, all six genera and the full spectrum of ecological and social variation in the clade. We detected positive selection within the mole-rat clade and along ancestral branches in approximately 700 genes including loci associated with tumorigenesis, aging, morphological development, and sociality. By combining these results with gene ontology annotation and protein-protein networks, we identified several clusters of functionally related genes. This family wide analysis of molecular evolution in mole-rats has identified a suite of positively selected genes, deepening our understanding of the extreme phenotypic traits exhibited by this group. PMID:26318402

  3. Molecular Assortment of Lens Species with Different Adaptations to Drought Conditions Using SSR Markers

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Dharmendra; Singh, Chandan Kumar; Tomar, Ram Sewak Singh; Taunk, Jyoti; Singh, Ranjeet; Maurya, Sadhana; Chaturvedi, Ashish Kumar; Pal, Madan; Singh, Rajendra; Dubey, Sarawan Kumar

    2016-01-01

    The success of drought tolerance breeding programs can be enhanced through molecular assortment of germplasm. This study was designed to characterize molecular diversity within and between Lens species with different adaptations to drought stress conditions using SSR markers. Drought stress was applied at seedling stage to study the effects on morpho-physiological traits under controlled condition, where tolerant cultivars and wilds showed 12.8–27.6% and 9.5–23.2% reduction in seed yield per plant respectively. When juxtaposed to field conditions, the tolerant cultivars (PDL-1 and PDL-2) and wild (ILWL-314 and ILWL-436) accessions showed 10.5–26.5% and 7.5%–15.6% reduction in seed yield per plant, respectively under rain-fed conditions. The reductions in seed yield in the two tolerant cultivars and wilds under severe drought condition were 48–49% and 30.5–45.3% respectively. A set of 258 alleles were identified among 278 genotypes using 35 SSR markers. Genetic diversity and polymorphism information contents varied between 0.321–0.854 and 0.299–0.836, with mean value of 0.682 and 0.643, respectively. All the genotypes were clustered into 11 groups based on SSR markers. Tolerant genotypes were grouped in cluster 6 while sensitive ones were mainly grouped into cluster 7. Wild accessions were separated from cultivars on the basis of both population structure and cluster analysis. Cluster analysis has further grouped the wild accessions on the basis of species and sub-species into 5 clusters. Physiological and morphological characters under drought stress were significantly (P = 0.05) different among microsatellite clusters. These findings suggest that drought adaptation is variable among wild and cultivated genotypes. Also, genotypes from contrasting clusters can be selected for hybridization which could help in evolution of better segregants for improving drought tolerance in lentil. PMID:26808306

  4. Molecular Assortment of Lens Species with Different Adaptations to Drought Conditions Using SSR Markers.

    PubMed

    Singh, Dharmendra; Singh, Chandan Kumar; Tomar, Ram Sewak Singh; Taunk, Jyoti; Singh, Ranjeet; Maurya, Sadhana; Chaturvedi, Ashish Kumar; Pal, Madan; Singh, Rajendra; Dubey, Sarawan Kumar

    2016-01-01

    The success of drought tolerance breeding programs can be enhanced through molecular assortment of germplasm. This study was designed to characterize molecular diversity within and between Lens species with different adaptations to drought stress conditions using SSR markers. Drought stress was applied at seedling stage to study the effects on morpho-physiological traits under controlled condition, where tolerant cultivars and wilds showed 12.8-27.6% and 9.5-23.2% reduction in seed yield per plant respectively. When juxtaposed to field conditions, the tolerant cultivars (PDL-1 and PDL-2) and wild (ILWL-314 and ILWL-436) accessions showed 10.5-26.5% and 7.5%-15.6% reduction in seed yield per plant, respectively under rain-fed conditions. The reductions in seed yield in the two tolerant cultivars and wilds under severe drought condition were 48-49% and 30.5-45.3% respectively. A set of 258 alleles were identified among 278 genotypes using 35 SSR markers. Genetic diversity and polymorphism information contents varied between 0.321-0.854 and 0.299-0.836, with mean value of 0.682 and 0.643, respectively. All the genotypes were clustered into 11 groups based on SSR markers. Tolerant genotypes were grouped in cluster 6 while sensitive ones were mainly grouped into cluster 7. Wild accessions were separated from cultivars on the basis of both population structure and cluster analysis. Cluster analysis has further grouped the wild accessions on the basis of species and sub-species into 5 clusters. Physiological and morphological characters under drought stress were significantly (P = 0.05) different among microsatellite clusters. These findings suggest that drought adaptation is variable among wild and cultivated genotypes. Also, genotypes from contrasting clusters can be selected for hybridization which could help in evolution of better segregants for improving drought tolerance in lentil.

  5. Molecular Assortment of Lens Species with Different Adaptations to Drought Conditions Using SSR Markers.

    PubMed

    Singh, Dharmendra; Singh, Chandan Kumar; Tomar, Ram Sewak Singh; Taunk, Jyoti; Singh, Ranjeet; Maurya, Sadhana; Chaturvedi, Ashish Kumar; Pal, Madan; Singh, Rajendra; Dubey, Sarawan Kumar

    2016-01-01

    The success of drought tolerance breeding programs can be enhanced through molecular assortment of germplasm. This study was designed to characterize molecular diversity within and between Lens species with different adaptations to drought stress conditions using SSR markers. Drought stress was applied at seedling stage to study the effects on morpho-physiological traits under controlled condition, where tolerant cultivars and wilds showed 12.8-27.6% and 9.5-23.2% reduction in seed yield per plant respectively. When juxtaposed to field conditions, the tolerant cultivars (PDL-1 and PDL-2) and wild (ILWL-314 and ILWL-436) accessions showed 10.5-26.5% and 7.5%-15.6% reduction in seed yield per plant, respectively under rain-fed conditions. The reductions in seed yield in the two tolerant cultivars and wilds under severe drought condition were 48-49% and 30.5-45.3% respectively. A set of 258 alleles were identified among 278 genotypes using 35 SSR markers. Genetic diversity and polymorphism information contents varied between 0.321-0.854 and 0.299-0.836, with mean value of 0.682 and 0.643, respectively. All the genotypes were clustered into 11 groups based on SSR markers. Tolerant genotypes were grouped in cluster 6 while sensitive ones were mainly grouped into cluster 7. Wild accessions were separated from cultivars on the basis of both population structure and cluster analysis. Cluster analysis has further grouped the wild accessions on the basis of species and sub-species into 5 clusters. Physiological and morphological characters under drought stress were significantly (P = 0.05) different among microsatellite clusters. These findings suggest that drought adaptation is variable among wild and cultivated genotypes. Also, genotypes from contrasting clusters can be selected for hybridization which could help in evolution of better segregants for improving drought tolerance in lentil. PMID:26808306

  6. Mathematical model for adaptive evolution of populations based on a complex domain

    PubMed Central

    Ibrahim, Rabha W.; Ahmad, M.Z.; Al-Janaby, Hiba F.

    2015-01-01

    A mutation is ultimately essential for adaptive evolution in all populations. It arises all the time, but is mostly fixed by enzymes. Further, most do consider that the evolution mechanism is by a natural assortment of variations in organisms in line for random variations in their DNA, and the suggestions for this are overwhelming. The altering of the construction of a gene, causing a different form that may be communicated to succeeding generations, produced by the modification of single base units in DNA, or the deletion, insertion, or rearrangement of larger units of chromosomes or genes. This altering is called a mutation. In this paper, a mathematical model is introduced to this reality. The model describes the time and space for the evolution. The tool is based on a complex domain for the space. We show that the evolution is distributed with the hypergeometric function. The Boundedness of the evolution is imposed by utilizing the Koebe function. PMID:26858564

  7. Gradually Adaptive Frameworks: Reasonable Disagreement and the Evolution of Evaluative Systems in Music Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haskins, Stanley

    2013-01-01

    The concept of "gradually adaptive frameworks" is introduced as a model with the potential to describe the evolution of belief evaluative systems through the consideration of reasonable arguments and evidence. This concept is demonstrated through an analysis of specific points of disagreement between David Elliott's praxial philosophy…

  8. Gradually Adaptive Frameworks: Reasonable Disagreement and the Evolution of Evaluative Systems in Music Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Haskins, Stanley

    2013-01-01

    The concept of "gradually adaptive frameworks" is introduced as a model with the potential to describe the evolution of belief evaluative systems through the consideration of reasonable arguments and evidence. This concept is demonstrated through an analysis of specific points of disagreement between David Elliott's praxial…

  9. Rapid adaptive evolution of northeastern coyotes via hybridization with wolves.

    PubMed

    Kays, Roland; Curtis, Abigail; Kirchman, Jeremy J

    2010-02-23

    The dramatic expansion of the geographical range of coyotes over the last 90 years is partly explained by changes to the landscape and local extinctions of wolves, but hybridization may also have facilitated their movement. We present mtDNA sequence data from 686 eastern coyotes and measurements of 196 skulls related to their two-front colonization pattern. We find evidence for hybridization with Great Lakes wolves only along the northern front, which is correlated with larger skull size, increased sexual dimorphism and a five times faster colonization rate than the southern front. Northeastern haplotype diversity is low, suggesting that this population was founded by very few females moving across the Saint Lawrence River. This northern front then spread south and west, eventually coming in contact with an expanding front of non-hybrid coyotes in western New York and Pennsylvania. We suggest that hybridization with wolves in Canada introduced adaptive variation that contributed to larger size, which in turn allowed eastern coyotes to better hunt deer, allowing a more rapid colonization of new areas than coyotes without introgressed wolf genes. Thus, hybridization is a conduit by which genetic variation from an extirpated species has been reintroduced into northeastern USA, enabling northeastern coyotes to occupy a portion of the niche left vacant by wolves.

  10. The evolution of adhesiveness as a social adaptation

    PubMed Central

    Garcia, Thomas; Doulcier, Guilhem; De Monte, Silvia

    2015-01-01

    Cellular adhesion is a key ingredient to sustain collective functions of microbial aggregates. Here, we investigate the evolutionary origins of adhesion and the emergence of groups of genealogically unrelated cells with a game-theoretical model. The considered adhesiveness trait is costly, continuous and affects both group formation and group-derived benefits. The formalism of adaptive dynamics reveals two evolutionary stable strategies, at each extreme on the axis of adhesiveness. We show that cohesive groups can evolve by small mutational steps, provided the population is already endowed with a minimum adhesiveness level. Assortment between more adhesive types, and in particular differential propensities to leave a fraction of individuals ungrouped at the end of the aggregation process, can compensate for the cost of increased adhesiveness. We also discuss the change in the social nature of more adhesive mutations along evolutionary trajectories, and find that altruism arises before directly beneficial behavior, despite being the most challenging form of cooperation. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.08595.001 PMID:26613415

  11. How does spatial dispersal network affect the evolution of parasite local adaptation?

    PubMed

    Vogwill, Tom; Fenton, Andy; Brockhurst, Michael A

    2010-06-01

    Studying patterns of parasite local adaptation can provide insights into the spatiotemporal dynamics of host-parasite coevolution. Many factors, both biotic and abiotic, have been identified that influence parasite local adaptation. In particular, dispersal and population structuring are considered important determinants of local adaptation. We investigated how the shape of the spatial dispersal network within experimental landscapes affected local adaptation of a bacteriophage parasite to its bacterial host. Regardless of landscape topology, dispersal always led to the evolution of phages with broader infectivity range. However, when the spatial dispersal network resulted in spatial variation in the breadth of phage infectivity range, significant levels of parasite local adaptation and local maladaptation were detected within the same landscape using the local versus foreign definition of local adaptation. By contrast, local adaptation was not detected using the home versus away or local versus global definitions of local adaptation. This suggests that spatial dispersal networks may play an important role in driving parasite local adaptation, particularly when the shape of the dispersal network generates nonuniform levels of host resistance or parasite infectivity throughout a species' range. PMID:20050909

  12. The first molecular phylogeny of Strepsiptera (Insecta) reveals an early burst of molecular evolution correlated with the transition to endoparasitism.

    PubMed

    McMahon, Dino P; Hayward, Alexander; Kathirithamby, Jeyaraney

    2011-01-01

    A comprehensive model of evolution requires an understanding of the relationship between selection at the molecular and phenotypic level. We investigate this in Strepsiptera, an order of endoparasitic insects whose evolutionary biology is poorly studied. We present the first molecular phylogeny of Strepsiptera, and use this as a framework to investigate the association between parasitism and molecular evolution. We find evidence of a significant burst in the rate of molecular evolution in the early history of Strepsiptera. The evolution of morphological traits linked to parasitism is significantly correlated with the pattern in molecular rate. The correlated burst in genotypic-phenotypic evolution precedes the main phase of strepsipteran diversification, which is characterised by the return to a low and even molecular rate, and a period of relative morphological stability. These findings suggest that the transition to endoparasitism led to relaxation of selective constraint in the strepsipteran genome. Our results indicate that a parasitic lifestyle can affect the rate of molecular evolution, although other causal life-history traits correlated with parasitism may also play an important role. PMID:21738621

  13. An adaptive interpolation scheme for molecular potential energy surfaces

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kowalewski, Markus; Larsson, Elisabeth; Heryudono, Alfa

    2016-08-01

    The calculation of potential energy surfaces for quantum dynamics can be a time consuming task—especially when a high level of theory for the electronic structure calculation is required. We propose an adaptive interpolation algorithm based on polyharmonic splines combined with a partition of unity approach. The adaptive node refinement allows to greatly reduce the number of sample points by employing a local error estimate. The algorithm and its scaling behavior are evaluated for a model function in 2, 3, and 4 dimensions. The developed algorithm allows for a more rapid and reliable interpolation of a potential energy surface within a given accuracy compared to the non-adaptive version.

  14. An adaptive interpolation scheme for molecular potential energy surfaces.

    PubMed

    Kowalewski, Markus; Larsson, Elisabeth; Heryudono, Alfa

    2016-08-28

    The calculation of potential energy surfaces for quantum dynamics can be a time consuming task-especially when a high level of theory for the electronic structure calculation is required. We propose an adaptive interpolation algorithm based on polyharmonic splines combined with a partition of unity approach. The adaptive node refinement allows to greatly reduce the number of sample points by employing a local error estimate. The algorithm and its scaling behavior are evaluated for a model function in 2, 3, and 4 dimensions. The developed algorithm allows for a more rapid and reliable interpolation of a potential energy surface within a given accuracy compared to the non-adaptive version. PMID:27586901

  15. An adaptive interpolation scheme for molecular potential energy surfaces.

    PubMed

    Kowalewski, Markus; Larsson, Elisabeth; Heryudono, Alfa

    2016-08-28

    The calculation of potential energy surfaces for quantum dynamics can be a time consuming task-especially when a high level of theory for the electronic structure calculation is required. We propose an adaptive interpolation algorithm based on polyharmonic splines combined with a partition of unity approach. The adaptive node refinement allows to greatly reduce the number of sample points by employing a local error estimate. The algorithm and its scaling behavior are evaluated for a model function in 2, 3, and 4 dimensions. The developed algorithm allows for a more rapid and reliable interpolation of a potential energy surface within a given accuracy compared to the non-adaptive version.

  16. Limits of Adaptation: The Evolution of Selective Neutrality

    PubMed Central

    Hartl, Daniel L.; Dykhuizen, Daniel E.; Dean, Antony M.

    1985-01-01

    Many enzymes in intermediary metabolism manifest saturation kinetics in which flux is a concave function of enzyme activity and often of the Michaelis-Menten form. The result is that, when natural selection favors increased enzyme activity so as to maximize flux, a point of diminishing returns will be attained in which any increase in flux results in a disproportionately small increase in fitness. Enzyme activity ultimately will reach a level at which the favorable effect of an increase in activity is of the order 1/(4Ne) or smaller, where Ne is the effective population number. At this point, many mutations that result in small changes in activity will result in negligible changes in fitness and will be selectively nearly neutral. We propose that this process is a mechanism whereby conditions for the occurrence of nearly neutral mutations and gene substitutions can be brought about by the long-continued action of natural selection. Evidence for the hypothesis derives from metabolic theory, direct studies of flux, studies of null and other types of alleles in Drosophila melanogaster and chemostat studies in Escherichia coli. Limitations and complications of the theory include changes in environment or genetic background, enzymes with sharply defined optima of activity, overdominance, pleiotropy, multifunctional enzymes and branched metabolic pathways. We conclude that the theory is a useful synthesis that unites many seemingly unrelated observations. The principal theoretical conclusion is that the conditions for the occurrence of neutral evolution can be brought about as an indirect result of the action of natural selection. PMID:3932127

  17. Adaptive cluster expansion approach for predicting the structure evolution of graphene oxide

    SciTech Connect

    Li, Xi-Bo; Guo, Pan; Wang, D.; Liu, Li-Min; Zhang, Yongsheng

    2014-12-14

    An adaptive cluster expansion (CE) method is used to explore surface adsorption and growth processes. Unlike the traditional CE method, suitable effective cluster interaction (ECI) parameters are determined, and then the selected fixed number of ECIs is continually optimized to predict the stable configurations with gradual increase of adatom coverage. Comparing with traditional CE method, the efficiency of the adaptive CE method could be greatly enhanced. As an application, the adsorption and growth of oxygen atoms on one side of pristine graphene was carefully investigated using this method in combination with first-principles calculations. The calculated results successfully uncover the structural evolution of graphene oxide for the different numbers of oxygen adatoms on graphene. The aggregation behavior of the stable configurations for different oxygen adatom coverages is revealed for increasing coverages of oxygen atoms. As a targeted method, adaptive CE can also be applied to understand the evolution of other surface adsorption and growth processes.

  18. A shift from magnitude to sign epistasis during adaptive evolution of a bacterial social trait.

    PubMed

    Zee, Peter C; Mendes-Soares, Helena; Yu, Yuen-Tsu N; Kraemer, Susanne A; Keller, Heike; Ossowski, Stephan; Schneeberger, Korbinian; Velicer, Gregory J

    2014-09-01

    Although the importance of epistasis in evolution has long been recognized, remarkably little is known about the processes by which epistatic interactions evolve in real time in specific biological systems. Here, we have characterized how the epistatic fitness relationship between a social gene and an adapting genome changes radically over a short evolutionary time frame in the social bacterium Myxococcus xanthus. We show that a highly beneficial effect of this social gene in the ancestral genome is gradually reduced--and ultimately reversed into a deleterious effect--over the course of an experimental adaptive trajectory in which a primitive form of novel cooperation evolved. This reduction and reversal of a positive social allelic effect is driven solely by changes in the genetic context in which the gene is expressed as new mutations are sequentially fixed during adaptive evolution, and explicitly demonstrates a significant evolutionary change in the genetic architecture of an ecologically important social trait.

  19. Gradual molecular evolution of a sex determination switch through incomplete penetrance of femaleness.

    PubMed

    Beye, Martin; Seelmann, Christine; Gempe, Tanja; Hasselmann, Martin; Vekemans, Xavier; Fondrk, M Kim; Page, Robert E

    2013-12-16

    Some genes regulate phenotypes that are either present or absent. They are often important regulators of developmental switches and are involved in morphological evolution. We have little understanding of the molecular mechanisms by which these absence/presence gene functions have evolved, because the phenotype and fitness of molecular intermediate forms are unknown. Here, we studied the sex-determining switch of 14 natural sequence variants of the csd gene among 76 genotypes of the honeybee (Apis mellifera). Heterozygous genotypes (different specificities) of the csd gene determine femaleness, while hemizygous genotypes (single specificity) determine maleness. Homozygous genotypes of the csd gene (same specificity) are lethal. We found that at least five amino acid differences and length variation between Csd specificities in the specifying domain (PSD) were sufficient to regularly induce femaleness. We estimated that, on average, six pairwise amino acid differences evolved under positive selection. We also identified a natural evolutionary intermediate that showed only three amino acid length differences in the PSD relative to its parental allele. This genotype showed an intermediate fitness because it implemented lethality regularly and induced femaleness infrequently (i.e., incomplete penetrance). We suggest incomplete penetrance as a mechanism through which new molecular switches can gradually and adaptively evolve.

  20. DAMBE5: a comprehensive software package for data analysis in molecular biology and evolution.

    PubMed

    Xia, Xuhua

    2013-07-01

    Since its first release in 2001 as mainly a software package for phylogenetic analysis, data analysis for molecular biology and evolution (DAMBE) has gained many new functions that may be classified into six categories: 1) sequence retrieval, editing, manipulation, and conversion among more than 20 standard sequence formats including MEGA, NEXUS, PHYLIP, GenBank, and the new NeXML format for interoperability, 2) motif characterization and discovery functions such as position weight matrix and Gibbs sampler, 3) descriptive genomic analysis tools with improved versions of codon adaptation index, effective number of codons, protein isoelectric point profiling, RNA and protein secondary structure prediction and calculation of minimum folding energy, and genomic skew plots with optimized window size, 4) molecular phylogenetics including sequence alignment, testing substitution saturation, distance-based, maximum parsimony, and maximum-likelihood methods for tree reconstructions, testing the molecular clock hypothesis with either a phylogeny or with relative-rate tests, dating gene duplication and speciation events, choosing the best-fit substitution models, and estimating rate heterogeneity over sites, 5) phylogeny-based comparative methods for continuous and discrete variables, and 6) graphic functions including secondary structure display, optimized skew plot, hydrophobicity plot, and many other plots of amino acid properties along a protein sequence, tree display and drawing by dragging nodes to each other, and visual searching of the maximum parsimony tree. DAMBE features a graphic, user-friendly, and intuitive interface and is freely available from http://dambe.bio.uottawa.ca (last accessed April 16, 2013).

  1. DAMBE5: a comprehensive software package for data analysis in molecular biology and evolution.

    PubMed

    Xia, Xuhua

    2013-07-01

    Since its first release in 2001 as mainly a software package for phylogenetic analysis, data analysis for molecular biology and evolution (DAMBE) has gained many new functions that may be classified into six categories: 1) sequence retrieval, editing, manipulation, and conversion among more than 20 standard sequence formats including MEGA, NEXUS, PHYLIP, GenBank, and the new NeXML format for interoperability, 2) motif characterization and discovery functions such as position weight matrix and Gibbs sampler, 3) descriptive genomic analysis tools with improved versions of codon adaptation index, effective number of codons, protein isoelectric point profiling, RNA and protein secondary structure prediction and calculation of minimum folding energy, and genomic skew plots with optimized window size, 4) molecular phylogenetics including sequence alignment, testing substitution saturation, distance-based, maximum parsimony, and maximum-likelihood methods for tree reconstructions, testing the molecular clock hypothesis with either a phylogeny or with relative-rate tests, dating gene duplication and speciation events, choosing the best-fit substitution models, and estimating rate heterogeneity over sites, 5) phylogeny-based comparative methods for continuous and discrete variables, and 6) graphic functions including secondary structure display, optimized skew plot, hydrophobicity plot, and many other plots of amino acid properties along a protein sequence, tree display and drawing by dragging nodes to each other, and visual searching of the maximum parsimony tree. DAMBE features a graphic, user-friendly, and intuitive interface and is freely available from http://dambe.bio.uottawa.ca (last accessed April 16, 2013). PMID:23564938

  2. Phylemon: a suite of web tools for molecular evolution, phylogenetics and phylogenomics.

    PubMed

    Tárraga, Joaquín; Medina, Ignacio; Arbiza, Leonardo; Huerta-Cepas, Jaime; Gabaldón, Toni; Dopazo, Joaquín; Dopazo, Hernán

    2007-07-01

    Phylemon is an online platform for phylogenetic and evolutionary analyses of molecular sequence data. It has been developed as a web server that integrates a suite of different tools selected among the most popular stand-alone programs in phylogenetic and evolutionary analysis. It has been conceived as a natural response to the increasing demand of data analysis of many experimental scientists wishing to add a molecular evolution and phylogenetics insight into their research. Tools included in Phylemon cover a wide yet selected range of programs: from the most basic for multiple sequence alignment to elaborate statistical methods of phylogenetic reconstruction including methods for evolutionary rates analyses and molecular adaptation. Phylemon has several features that differentiates it from other resources: (i) It offers an integrated environment that enables the direct concatenation of evolutionary analyses, the storage of results and handles required data format conversions, (ii) Once an outfile is produced, Phylemon suggests the next possible analyses, thus guiding the user and facilitating the integration of multi-step analyses, and (iii) users can define and save complete pipelines for specific phylogenetic analysis to be automatically used on many genes in subsequent sessions or multiple genes in a single session (phylogenomics). The Phylemon web server is available at http://phylemon.bioinfo.cipf.es.

  3. The molecular evolution of spiggin nesting glue in sticklebacks.

    PubMed

    Seear, P J; Rosato, E; Goodall-Copestake, W P; Barber, I

    2015-09-01

    Gene duplication and subsequent divergence can lead to the evolution of new functions and lineage-specific traits. In sticklebacks, the successive duplication of a mucin gene (MUC19) into a tandemly arrayed, multigene family has enabled the production of copious amounts of 'spiggin', a secreted adhesive protein essential for nest construction. Here, we examine divergence between spiggin genes among three-spined sticklebacks (Gasterosteus aculeatus) from ancestral marine and derived freshwater populations, and propose underpinning gene duplication mechanisms. Sanger sequencing revealed substantial diversity among spiggin transcripts, including alternatively spliced variants and interchromosomal spiggin chimeric genes. Comparative analysis of the sequenced transcripts and all other spiggin genes in the public domain support the presence of three main spiggin lineages (spiggin A, spiggin B and spiggin C) with further subdivisions within spiggin B (B1, B2) and spiggin C (C1, C2). Spiggin A had diverged least from the ancestral MUC19, while the spiggin C duplicates had diversified most substantially. In silico translations of the spiggin gene open reading frames predicted that spiggins A and B are secreted as long mucin-like polymers, while spiggins C1 and C2 are secreted as short monomers, with putative antimicrobial properties. We propose that diversification of duplicated spiggin genes has facilitated local adaptation of spiggin to a range of aquatic habitats. PMID:26173374

  4. Long-term dynamics of adaptive evolution in a globally important phytoplankton species to ocean acidification.

    PubMed

    Schlüter, Lothar; Lohbeck, Kai T; Gröger, Joachim P; Riebesell, Ulf; Reusch, Thorsten B H

    2016-07-01

    Marine phytoplankton may adapt to ocean change, such as acidification or warming, because of their large population sizes and short generation times. Long-term adaptation to novel environments is a dynamic process, and phenotypic change can take place thousands of generations after exposure to novel conditions. We conducted a long-term evolution experiment (4 years = 2100 generations), starting with a single clone of the abundant and widespread coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi exposed to three different CO2 levels simulating ocean acidification (OA). Growth rates as a proxy for Darwinian fitness increased only moderately under both levels of OA [+3.4% and +4.8%, respectively, at 1100 and 2200 μatm partial pressure of CO2 (Pco2)] relative to control treatments (ambient CO2, 400 μatm). Long-term adaptation to OA was complex, and initial phenotypic responses of ecologically important traits were later reverted. The biogeochemically important trait of calcification, in particular, that had initially been restored within the first year of evolution was later reduced to levels lower than the performance of nonadapted populations under OA. Calcification was not constitutively lost but returned to control treatment levels when high CO2-adapted isolates were transferred back to present-day control CO2 conditions. Selection under elevated CO2 exacerbated a general decrease of cell sizes under long-term laboratory evolution. Our results show that phytoplankton may evolve complex phenotypic plasticity that can affect biogeochemically important traits, such as calcification. Adaptive evolution may play out over longer time scales (>1 year) in an unforeseen way under future ocean conditions that cannot be predicted from initial adaptation responses. PMID:27419227

  5. Adaptation to Temporally Fluctuating Environments by the Evolution of Maternal Effects

    PubMed Central

    Dey, Snigdhadip; Proulx, Stephen R.; Teotónio, Henrique

    2016-01-01

    All organisms live in temporally fluctuating environments. Theory predicts that the evolution of deterministic maternal effects (i.e., anticipatory maternal effects or transgenerational phenotypic plasticity) underlies adaptation to environments that fluctuate in a predictably alternating fashion over maternal-offspring generations. In contrast, randomizing maternal effects (i.e., diversifying and conservative bet-hedging), are expected to evolve in response to unpredictably fluctuating environments. Although maternal effects are common, evidence for their adaptive significance is equivocal since they can easily evolve as a correlated response to maternal selection and may or may not increase the future fitness of offspring. Using the hermaphroditic nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, we here show that the experimental evolution of maternal glycogen provisioning underlies adaptation to a fluctuating normoxia–anoxia hatching environment by increasing embryo survival under anoxia. In strictly alternating environments, we found that hermaphrodites evolved the ability to increase embryo glycogen provisioning when they experienced normoxia and to decrease embryo glycogen provisioning when they experienced anoxia. At odds with existing theory, however, populations facing irregularly fluctuating normoxia–anoxia hatching environments failed to evolve randomizing maternal effects. Instead, adaptation in these populations may have occurred through the evolution of fitness effects that percolate over multiple generations, as they maintained considerably high expected growth rates during experimental evolution despite evolving reduced fecundity and reduced embryo survival under one or two generations of anoxia. We develop theoretical models that explain why adaptation to a wide range of patterns of environmental fluctuations hinges on the existence of deterministic maternal effects, and that such deterministic maternal effects are more likely to contribute to adaptation than

  6. Long-term dynamics of adaptive evolution in a globally important phytoplankton species to ocean acidification.

    PubMed

    Schlüter, Lothar; Lohbeck, Kai T; Gröger, Joachim P; Riebesell, Ulf; Reusch, Thorsten B H

    2016-07-01

    Marine phytoplankton may adapt to ocean change, such as acidification or warming, because of their large population sizes and short generation times. Long-term adaptation to novel environments is a dynamic process, and phenotypic change can take place thousands of generations after exposure to novel conditions. We conducted a long-term evolution experiment (4 years = 2100 generations), starting with a single clone of the abundant and widespread coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi exposed to three different CO2 levels simulating ocean acidification (OA). Growth rates as a proxy for Darwinian fitness increased only moderately under both levels of OA [+3.4% and +4.8%, respectively, at 1100 and 2200 μatm partial pressure of CO2 (Pco2)] relative to control treatments (ambient CO2, 400 μatm). Long-term adaptation to OA was complex, and initial phenotypic responses of ecologically important traits were later reverted. The biogeochemically important trait of calcification, in particular, that had initially been restored within the first year of evolution was later reduced to levels lower than the performance of nonadapted populations under OA. Calcification was not constitutively lost but returned to control treatment levels when high CO2-adapted isolates were transferred back to present-day control CO2 conditions. Selection under elevated CO2 exacerbated a general decrease of cell sizes under long-term laboratory evolution. Our results show that phytoplankton may evolve complex phenotypic plasticity that can affect biogeochemically important traits, such as calcification. Adaptive evolution may play out over longer time scales (>1 year) in an unforeseen way under future ocean conditions that cannot be predicted from initial adaptation responses.

  7. Adaptation to Temporally Fluctuating Environments by the Evolution of Maternal Effects.

    PubMed

    Dey, Snigdhadip; Proulx, Stephen R; Teotónio, Henrique

    2016-02-01

    All organisms live in temporally fluctuating environments. Theory predicts that the evolution of deterministic maternal effects (i.e., anticipatory maternal effects or transgenerational phenotypic plasticity) underlies adaptation to environments that fluctuate in a predictably alternating fashion over maternal-offspring generations. In contrast, randomizing maternal effects (i.e., diversifying and conservative bet-hedging), are expected to evolve in response to unpredictably fluctuating environments. Although maternal effects are common, evidence for their adaptive significance is equivocal since they can easily evolve as a correlated response to maternal selection and may or may not increase the future fitness of offspring. Using the hermaphroditic nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, we here show that the experimental evolution of maternal glycogen provisioning underlies adaptation to a fluctuating normoxia-anoxia hatching environment by increasing embryo survival under anoxia. In strictly alternating environments, we found that hermaphrodites evolved the ability to increase embryo glycogen provisioning when they experienced normoxia and to decrease embryo glycogen provisioning when they experienced anoxia. At odds with existing theory, however, populations facing irregularly fluctuating normoxia-anoxia hatching environments failed to evolve randomizing maternal effects. Instead, adaptation in these populations may have occurred through the evolution of fitness effects that percolate over multiple generations, as they maintained considerably high expected growth rates during experimental evolution despite evolving reduced fecundity and reduced embryo survival under one or two generations of anoxia. We develop theoretical models that explain why adaptation to a wide range of patterns of environmental fluctuations hinges on the existence of deterministic maternal effects, and that such deterministic maternal effects are more likely to contribute to adaptation than

  8. Long-term dynamics of adaptive evolution in a globally important phytoplankton species to ocean acidification

    PubMed Central

    Schlüter, Lothar; Lohbeck, Kai T.; Gröger, Joachim P.; Riebesell, Ulf; Reusch, Thorsten B. H.

    2016-01-01

    Marine phytoplankton may adapt to ocean change, such as acidification or warming, because of their large population sizes and short generation times. Long-term adaptation to novel environments is a dynamic process, and phenotypic change can take place thousands of generations after exposure to novel conditions. We conducted a long-term evolution experiment (4 years = 2100 generations), starting with a single clone of the abundant and widespread coccolithophore Emiliania huxleyi exposed to three different CO2 levels simulating ocean acidification (OA). Growth rates as a proxy for Darwinian fitness increased only moderately under both levels of OA [+3.4% and +4.8%, respectively, at 1100 and 2200 μatm partial pressure of CO2 (Pco2)] relative to control treatments (ambient CO2, 400 μatm). Long-term adaptation to OA was complex, and initial phenotypic responses of ecologically important traits were later reverted. The biogeochemically important trait of calcification, in particular, that had initially been restored within the first year of evolution was later reduced to levels lower than the performance of nonadapted populations under OA. Calcification was not constitutively lost but returned to control treatment levels when high CO2–adapted isolates were transferred back to present-day control CO2 conditions. Selection under elevated CO2 exacerbated a general decrease of cell sizes under long-term laboratory evolution. Our results show that phytoplankton may evolve complex phenotypic plasticity that can affect biogeochemically important traits, such as calcification. Adaptive evolution may play out over longer time scales (>1 year) in an unforeseen way under future ocean conditions that cannot be predicted from initial adaptation responses. PMID:27419227

  9. Exploiting Adaptive Laboratory Evolution of Streptomyces clavuligerus for Antibiotic Discovery and Overproduction

    PubMed Central

    Charusanti, Pep; Fong, Nicole L.; Nagarajan, Harish; Pereira, Alban R.; Li, Howard J.; Abate, Elisa A.; Su, Yongxuan; Gerwick, William H.; Palsson, Bernhard O.

    2012-01-01

    Adaptation is normally viewed as the enemy of the antibiotic discovery and development process because adaptation among pathogens to antibiotic exposure leads to resistance. We present a method here that, in contrast, exploits the power of adaptation among antibiotic producers to accelerate the discovery of antibiotics. A competition-based adaptive laboratory evolution scheme is presented whereby an antibiotic-producing microorganism is competed against a target pathogen and serially passed over time until the producer evolves the ability to synthesize a chemical entity that inhibits growth of the pathogen. When multiple Streptomyces clavuligerus replicates were adaptively evolved against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus N315 in this manner, a strain emerged that acquired the ability to constitutively produce holomycin. In contrast, no holomycin could be detected from the unevolved wild-type strain. Moreover, genome re-sequencing revealed that the evolved strain had lost pSCL4, a large 1.8 Mbp plasmid, and acquired several single nucleotide polymorphisms in genes that have been shown to affect secondary metabolite biosynthesis. These results demonstrate that competition-based adaptive laboratory evolution can constitute a platform to create mutants that overproduce known antibiotics and possibly to discover new compounds as well. PMID:22470465

  10. "Simulated molecular evolution" or computer-generated artifacts?

    PubMed

    Darius, F; Rojas, R

    1994-11-01

    1. The authors define a function with value 1 for the positive examples and 0 for the negative ones. They fit a continuous function but do not deal at all with the error margin of the fit, which is almost as large as the function values they compute. 2. The term "quality" for the value of the fitted function gives the impression that some biological significance is associated with values of the fitted function strictly between 0 and 1, but there is no justification for this kind of interpretation and finding the point where the fit achieves its maximum does not make sense. 3. By neglecting the error margin the authors try to optimize the fitted function using differences in the second, third, fourth, and even fifth decimal place which have no statistical significance. 4. Even if such a fit could profit from more data points, the authors should first prove that the region of interest has some kind of smoothness, that is, that a continuous fit makes any sense at all. 5. "Simulated molecular evolution" is a misnomer. We are dealing here with random search. Since the margin of error is so large, the fitted function does not provide statistically significant information about the points in search space where strings with cleavage sites could be found. This implies that the method is a highly unreliable stochastic search in the space of strings, even if the neural network is capable of learning some simple correlations. 6. Classical statistical methods are for these kind of problems with so few data points clearly superior to the neural networks used as a "black box" by the authors, which in the way they are structured provide a model with an error margin as large as the numbers being computed.7. And finally, even if someone would provide us with a function which separates strings with cleavage sites from strings without them perfectly, so-called simulated molecular evolution would not be better than random selection.Since a perfect fit would only produce exactly ones or

  11. Can the experimental evolution programme help us elucidate the genetic basis of adaptation in nature?

    PubMed

    Bailey, Susan F; Bataillon, Thomas

    2016-01-01

    There have been a variety of approaches taken to try to characterize and identify the genetic basis of adaptation in nature, spanning theoretical models, experimental evolution studies and direct tests of natural populations. Theoretical models can provide formalized and detailed hypotheses regarding evolutionary processes and patterns, from which experimental evolution studies can then provide important proofs of concepts and characterize what is biologically reasonable. Genetic and genomic data from natural populations then allow for the identification of the particular factors that have and continue to play an important role in shaping adaptive evolution in the natural world. Further to this, experimental evolution studies allow for tests of theories that may be difficult or impossible to test in natural populations for logistical and methodological reasons and can even generate new insights, suggesting further refinement of existing theories. However, as experimental evolution studies often take place in a very particular set of controlled conditions--that is simple environments, a small range of usually asexual species, relatively short timescales--the question remains as to how applicable these experimental results are to natural populations. In this review, we discuss important insights coming from experimental evolution, focusing on four key topics tied to the evolutionary genetics of adaptation, and within those topics, we discuss the extent to which the experimental work compliments and informs natural population studies. We finish by making suggestions for future work in particular a need for natural population genomic time series data, as well as the necessity for studies that combine both experimental evolution and natural population approaches.

  12. Molecular Dynamic Simulation of Thin Film Growth Stress Evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zheng, Haifeng

    2011-12-01

    With the increasing demand for thin films across a wide range of technology, especially in electronic and magnetic applications, controlling the stresses in deposited thin films has become one of the more important challenges in modern engineering. It is well known that large intrinsic stress---in the magnitude of several gigapascals---can result during the thin film preparation. The magnitude of stress depends on the deposition technique, film thickness, types and structures of materials used as films and substrates, as well as other factors. Such large intrinsic stress may lead to film cracking and peeling in case of tensile stress, and delamination and blistering in case of compression. However it may also have beneficial effects on optoelectronics and its applications. For example, intrinsic stresses can be used to change the electronic band gap of semiconducting materials. The far-reaching fields of microelectronics and optoelectronics depend critically on the properties, behavior, and reliable performance of deposited thin films. Thus, understanding and controlling the origins and behavior of such intrinsic stresses in deposited thin films is a highly active field of research. In this study, on-going tensile stress evolution during Volmer-Weber growth mode was analyzed through numerical methods. A realistic model with semi-cylinder shape free surfaces was used and molecular dynamics simulations were conducted. Simulations were at room temperature (300 K), and 10 nanometer diameter of islands were used. A deposition rate that every 3 picoseconds deposit one atom was chosen for simulations. The deposition energy was and lattice orientation is [0 0 1]. Five different random seeds were used to ensure average behaviors. In the first part of this study, initial coalescence stress was first calculated by comparing two similar models, which only differed in the distance between two neighboring islands. Three different substrate thickness systems were analyzed to

  13. Chemical evolution of giant molecular clouds in simulations of galaxies

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Richings, Alexander J.; Schaye, Joop

    2016-08-01

    We present an analysis of giant molecular clouds (GMCs) within hydrodynamic simulations of isolated, low-mass (M* ˜ 109 M⊙) disc galaxies. We study the evolution of molecular abundances and the implications for CO emission and the XCO conversion factor in individual clouds. We define clouds either as regions above a density threshold n_{H, min} = 10 {cm}^{-3}, or using an observationally motivated CO intensity threshold of 0.25 {K} {km} {s}^{-1}. Our simulations include a non-equilibrium chemical model with 157 species, including 20 molecules. We also investigate the effects of resolution and pressure floors (i.e. Jeans limiters). We find cloud lifetimes up to ≈ 40 Myr, with a median of 13 Myr, in agreement with observations. At one-tenth solar metallicity, young clouds ( ≲ 10-15 Myr) are underabundant in H2 and CO compared to chemical equilibrium, by factors of ≈3 and one to two orders of magnitude, respectively. At solar metallicity, GMCs reach chemical equilibrium faster (within ≈ 1 Myr). We also compute CO emission from individual clouds. The mean CO intensity, ICO, is strongly suppressed at low dust extinction, Av, and possibly saturates towards high Av, in agreement with observations. The ICO-Av relation shifts towards higher Av for higher metallicities and, to a lesser extent, for stronger UV radiation. At one-tenth solar metallicity, CO emission is weaker in young clouds ( ≲ 10-15 Myr), consistent with the underabundance of CO. Consequently, XCO decreases by an order of magnitude from 0 to 15 Myr, albeit with a large scatter.

  14. Molecular phylogeny and evolution of the genus Neoerysiphe (Erysiphaceae, Ascomycota).

    PubMed

    Takamatsu, Susumu; Havrylenko, Maria; Wolcan, Silvia M; Matsuda, Sanae; Niinomi, Seiko

    2008-06-01

    The genus Neoerysiphe belongs to the tribe Golovinomyceteae of the Erysiphaceae together with the genera Arthrocladiella and Golovinomyces. This is a relatively small genus, comprising only six species, and having ca 300 species from six plant families as hosts. To investigate the molecular phylogeny and evolution of the genus, we determined the nucleotide sequences of the rDNA ITS regions and the divergent domains D1 and D2 of the 28S rDNA. The 30 ITS sequences from Neoerysiphe are divided into three monophyletic groups that are represented by their host families. Groups 1 and 3 consist of N. galeopsidis from Lamiaceae and N. galii from Rubiaceae, respectively, and the genetic diversity within each group is extremely low. Group 2 is represented by N. cumminsiana from Asteraceae. This group also includes Oidium baccharidis, O. maquii, and Oidium spp. from Galinsoga (Asteraceae) and Aloysia (Verbenaceae), and is further divided into four subgroups. N. galeopsidis is distributed worldwide, but is especially common in western Eurasia from Central Asia to Europe. N. galii is also common in western Eurasia. In contrast, the specimens of group 2 were all collected in the New World, except for one specimen that was collected in Japan; this may indicate a close relationship of group 2 with the New World. Molecular clock calibration demonstrated that Neoerysiphe split from other genera of the Erysiphaceae ca 35-45M years ago (Mya), and that the three groups of Neoerysiphe diverged between 10 and 15Mya, in the Miocene. Aloysia citriodora is a new host for the Erysiphaceae and the fungus on this plant is described as O. aloysiae sp. nov. PMID:18495450

  15. Rapid evolution in response to introduced predators II: the contribution of adaptive plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Latta, Leigh C; Bakelar, Jeremy W; Knapp, Roland A; Pfrender, Michael E

    2007-01-01

    Background Introductions of non-native species can significantly alter the selective environment for populations of native species, which can respond through phenotypic plasticity or genetic adaptation. We examined phenotypic and genetic responses of Daphnia populations to recent introductions of non-native fish to assess the relative roles of phenotypic plasticity versus genetic change in causing the observed patterns. The Daphnia community in alpine lakes throughout the Sierra Nevada of California (USA) is ideally suited for investigation of rapid adaptive evolution because there are multiple lakes with and without introduced fish predators. We conducted common-garden experiments involving presence or absence of chemical cues produced by fish and measured morphological and life-history traits in Daphnia melanica populations collected from lakes with contrasting fish stocking histories. The experiment allowed us to assess the degree of population differentiation due to fish predation and examine the contribution of adaptive plasticity in the response to predator introduction. Results Our results show reductions in egg number and body size of D. melanica in response to introduced fish. These phenotypic changes have a genetic basis but are partly due to a direct response to chemical cues from fish via adaptive phenotypic plasticity. Body size showed the largest phenotypic change, on the order of nine phenotypic standard deviations, with approximately 11% of the change explained by adaptive plasticity. Both evolutionary and plastic changes in body size and egg number occurred but no changes in the timing of reproduction were observed. Conclusion Native Daphnia populations exposed to chemical cues produced by salmonid fish predators display adaptive plasticity for body size and fecundity. The magnitude of adaptive plasticity was insufficient to explain the total phenotypic change, so the realized change in phenotypic means in populations exposed to introduced fish may

  16. Dynamical Evolution of Supernova Remnants Breaking Through Molecular Clouds

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cho, Wankee; Kim, Jongsoo; Koo, Bon-Chul

    2015-04-01

    We carry out three-dimensional hydrodynamic simulations of the supernova remnants (SNRs) produced inside molecular clouds (MCs) near their surface using the HLL code tep{har83}. We explore the dynamical evolution and the X-ray morphology of SNRs after breaking through the MC surface for ranges of the explosion depths below the surface and the density ratios of the clouds to the intercloud media (ICM). We find that if an SNR breaks out through an MC surface in its Sedov stage, the outermost dense shell of the remnant is divided into several layers. The divided layers are subject to the Rayleigh-Taylor instability and fragmented. On the other hand, if an SNR breaks through an MC after the remnant enters the snowplow phase, the radiative shell is not divided to layers. We also compare the predictions of previous analytic solutions for the expansion of SNRs in stratified media with our one-dimensional simulations. Moreover, we produce synthetic X-ray surface brightness in order to research the center-bright X-ray morphology shown in thermal composite SNRs. In the late stages, a breakout SNR shows the center-bright X-ray morphology inside an MC in our results. We apply our model to the observational results of the X-ray morphology of the thermal composite SNR 3C 391.

  17. Molecular Evolution of the Sorghum Maturity Gene Ma3

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Yan; Tan, Lubin; Fu, Yongcai; Zhu, Zuofeng; Liu, Fengxia; Sun, Chuanqing; Cai, Hongwei

    2015-01-01

    Time to maturity is a critical trait in sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) breeding, as it determines whether a variety can be grown in a particular cropping system or ecosystem. Understanding the nucleotide variation and the mechanisms of molecular evolution of the maturity genes would be helpful for breeding programs. In this study, we analyzed the nucleotide diversity of Ma3, an important maturity gene in sorghum, using 252 cultivated and wild sorghum materials from all over the world. The nucleotide variation and diversity were analyzed based both on race- and usage-based groups. We also sequenced 12 genes around the Ma3 gene in 185 of these materials to search for a selective sweep and found that purifying selection was the strongest force on Ma3, as low nucleotide diversity and low-frequency amino acid variants were observed. However, a very special mutation, described as ma3R, seemed to be under positive selection, as indicated by dramatically reduced nucleotide variation not only at the loci but also in the surrounding regions among individuals carrying the mutations. In addition, in an association study using the Ma3 nucleotide variations, we detected 3 significant SNPs for the heading date at a high-latitude environment (Beijing) and 17 at a low-latitude environment (Hainan). The results of this study increases our understanding of the evolutionary mechanisms of the maturity genes in sorghum and will be useful in sorghum breeding. PMID:25961888

  18. Molecular evolution of the Sorghum Maturity Gene Ma3.

    PubMed

    Wang, Yan; Tan, Lubin; Fu, Yongcai; Zhu, Zuofeng; Liu, Fengxia; Sun, Chuanqing; Cai, Hongwei

    2015-01-01

    Time to maturity is a critical trait in sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) breeding, as it determines whether a variety can be grown in a particular cropping system or ecosystem. Understanding the nucleotide variation and the mechanisms of molecular evolution of the maturity genes would be helpful for breeding programs. In this study, we analyzed the nucleotide diversity of Ma3, an important maturity gene in sorghum, using 252 cultivated and wild sorghum materials from all over the world. The nucleotide variation and diversity were analyzed based both on race- and usage-based groups. We also sequenced 12 genes around the Ma3 gene in 185 of these materials to search for a selective sweep and found that purifying selection was the strongest force on Ma3, as low nucleotide diversity and low-frequency amino acid variants were observed. However, a very special mutation, described as ma3R, seemed to be under positive selection, as indicated by dramatically reduced nucleotide variation not only at the loci but also in the surrounding regions among individuals carrying the mutations. In addition, in an association study using the Ma3 nucleotide variations, we detected 3 significant SNPs for the heading date at a high-latitude environment (Beijing) and 17 at a low-latitude environment (Hainan). The results of this study increases our understanding of the evolutionary mechanisms of the maturity genes in sorghum and will be useful in sorghum breeding.

  19. Contemporary evolution during invasion: evidence for differentiation, natural selection, and local adaptation.

    PubMed

    Colautti, Robert I; Lau, Jennifer A

    2015-05-01

    Biological invasions are 'natural' experiments that can improve our understanding of contemporary evolution. We evaluate evidence for population differentiation, natural selection and adaptive evolution of invading plants and animals at two nested spatial scales: (i) among introduced populations (ii) between native and introduced genotypes. Evolution during invasion is frequently inferred, but rarely confirmed as adaptive. In common garden studies, quantitative trait differentiation is only marginally lower (~3.5%) among introduced relative to native populations, despite genetic bottlenecks and shorter timescales (i.e. millennia vs. decades). However, differentiation between genotypes from the native vs. introduced range is less clear and confounded by nonrandom geographic sampling; simulations suggest this causes a high false-positive discovery rate (>50%) in geographically structured populations. Selection differentials (¦s¦) are stronger in introduced than in native species, although selection gradients (¦β¦) are not, consistent with introduced species experiencing weaker genetic constraints. This could facilitate rapid adaptation, but evidence is limited. For example, rapid phenotypic evolution often manifests as geographical clines, but simulations demonstrate that nonadaptive trait clines can evolve frequently during colonization (~two-thirds of simulations). Additionally, QST-FST studies may often misrepresent the strength and form of natural selection acting during invasion. Instead, classic approaches in evolutionary ecology (e.g. selection analysis, reciprocal transplant, artificial selection) are necessary to determine the frequency of adaptive evolution during invasion and its influence on establishment, spread and impact of invasive species. These studies are rare but crucial for managing biological invasions in the context of global change. PMID:25891044

  20. Contemporary evolution during invasion: evidence for differentiation, natural selection, and local adaptation.

    PubMed

    Colautti, Robert I; Lau, Jennifer A

    2015-05-01

    Biological invasions are 'natural' experiments that can improve our understanding of contemporary evolution. We evaluate evidence for population differentiation, natural selection and adaptive evolution of invading plants and animals at two nested spatial scales: (i) among introduced populations (ii) between native and introduced genotypes. Evolution during invasion is frequently inferred, but rarely confirmed as adaptive. In common garden studies, quantitative trait differentiation is only marginally lower (~3.5%) among introduced relative to native populations, despite genetic bottlenecks and shorter timescales (i.e. millennia vs. decades). However, differentiation between genotypes from the native vs. introduced range is less clear and confounded by nonrandom geographic sampling; simulations suggest this causes a high false-positive discovery rate (>50%) in geographically structured populations. Selection differentials (¦s¦) are stronger in introduced than in native species, although selection gradients (¦β¦) are not, consistent with introduced species experiencing weaker genetic constraints. This could facilitate rapid adaptation, but evidence is limited. For example, rapid phenotypic evolution often manifests as geographical clines, but simulations demonstrate that nonadaptive trait clines can evolve frequently during colonization (~two-thirds of simulations). Additionally, QST-FST studies may often misrepresent the strength and form of natural selection acting during invasion. Instead, classic approaches in evolutionary ecology (e.g. selection analysis, reciprocal transplant, artificial selection) are necessary to determine the frequency of adaptive evolution during invasion and its influence on establishment, spread and impact of invasive species. These studies are rare but crucial for managing biological invasions in the context of global change.

  1. [Episodes of adaptive evolution of mitochondrial genome in Asiatic salamanders (Amphibia, Caudata, Hynobiidae)].

    PubMed

    Maliarchuk, B A; Derenko, M V; Denisova, G A

    2014-02-01

    To elucidate the effect of natural selection on the evolution of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) in Asiatic salamanders of the family Hynobiidae, nucleotide sequences of 12 protein-coding genes were analyzed. Using a mixed effects model of evolution, it was found that, in spite of the pronounced effect of negative selection on the mtDNA evolution in Hynobiidae (which is typical for the animals in general), two phylogenetic clusters, the West Asian one, represented by the genera Ranodon and Paradactylodon, and North Eurasian one, represented by the genus Salamandrella, were formed under the influence of episodic positive selection. Analysis of protein sequences encoded by the mitochondrial genome also supported the influence of positive selection on the evolution of Hynobiidae at some stages of their cladogenesis. It is suggested that the signatures of adaptive evolution detected in the mtDNA of Hynobiidae were determined by the complex and long-lasting history of their formation, accompanied by adaptation to the changing environment. PMID:25711027

  2. Detecting the signatures of adaptive evolution in protein-coding genes.

    PubMed

    Bielawski, Joseph P

    2013-01-01

    The field of molecular evolution, which includes genome evolution, is devoted to finding variation within and between groups of organisms and explaining the processes responsible for generating this variation. Many DNA changes are believed to have little to no functional effect, and a neutral process will best explain their evolution. Thus, a central task is to discover which changes had positive fitness consequences and were subject to Darwinian natural selection during the course of evolution. Due the size and complexity of modern molecular datasets, the field has come to rely extensively on statistical modeling techniques to meet this analytical challenge. For DNA sequences that encode proteins, one of the most powerful approaches is to employ a statistical model of codon evolution. This unit provides a general introduction to the practice of modeling codon evolution using the statistical framework of maximum likelihood. Four real-data analysis activities are used to illustrate the principles of parameter estimation, robustness, hypothesis testing, and site classification. Each activity includes an explicit analytical protocol based on programs provided by the Phylogenetic Analysis by Maximum Likelihood (PAML) package. PMID:23288462

  3. Evidence of adaptive evolution of alpine pheasants to high-altitude environment from mitogenomic perspective.

    PubMed

    Gu, Peng; Liu, Wei; Yao, Yong-fang; Ni, Qing-yong; Zhang, Ming-wang; Li, Di-yan; Xu, Huai-liang

    2016-01-01

    Adaptive evolutions to high-altitude adaptation have been intensively studied in mammals. However, considering the additional vertebrate groups, new perception regarding selection challenged by high-altitude stress on mitochondrial genome can be gained. To test this hypothesis, we compiled and analyzed the mitochondrial genomes of 5 alpine pheasants and 12 low-altitude species in Phasianidae. The results that evolutionary rates of ATP6 and ND6 showing significant fluctuation among branches when involved with five alpine pheasants revealed both genes might have implications with adapting to highland environment. The radical physico-chemical property changes identified by the modified MM01 model, including composition (C) and equilibrium constant (ionization of COOH) (Pk') in ATP6 and beta-structure tendencies (Pβ), Pk', and long-range non-bonded energy (El) in ND6, suggested that minor overall adjustments in size, protein conformation and relative orientation of reaction interfaces have been optimized to provide the ideal environments for electron transfer, proton translocation and generation of adenosine triphosphate (ATP). Additionally, three unique substitution sites were identified under selection in ND6, which could be potentially important adaptive changes contributing to cellular energy production. Our findings suggested that adaptive evolution may occur in alpine pheasants, which are an important complement to the knowledge of genetic mechanisms against the high-altitude environment in non-mammal animals.

  4. Toward a general theory of adaptive radiation: insights from microbial experimental evolution.

    PubMed

    Kassen, Rees

    2009-06-01

    The history of life has been punctuated by unusually spectacular periods of evolutionary diversification called adaptive radiation. Darwin's finches in the Galapagos, cichlid fishes in African Rift and Nicaraguan crater lakes, and the emergence of mammals at the end of the Cretaceous are hallmark examples. Although we have learned much from these and other case studies about the mechanisms thought to drive adaptive radiations, convincing experimental tests of theory are often lacking for the simple reason that it is usually impossible to "rewind the tape of life," as Stephen Jay Gould was fond of saying, and run it again. This situation has changed dramatically in recent years with the increasing emphasis on the use of microbial populations which, because of their small size and rapid generation times, make possible the construction of replicated, manipulative experiments to study evolution in the laboratory. Here I review the contributions that microbial experimental evolution has made to our understanding of the ecological and genetic mechanisms underlying adaptive radiation. I focus on three major gaps in the theory of adaptive radiation--the paucity of direct tests of mechanism, the genetics of diversification, and the limits and constraints on the progress of radiations--with the aim of pointing the way toward the development of a more general theory of adaptive radiation.

  5. Adaptive evolution of baker's yeast in a dough-like environment enhances freeze and salinity tolerance.

    PubMed

    Aguilera, Jaime; Andreu, Pasqual; Randez-Gil, Francisca; Prieto, Jose Antonio

    2010-03-01

    We used adaptive evolution to improve freeze tolerance of industrial baker's yeast. Our hypothesis was that adaptation to low temperature is accompanied by enhanced resistance of yeast to freezing. Based on this hypothesis, yeast was propagated in a flour-free liquid dough model system, which contained sorbitol and NaCl, by successive batch refreshments maintained constantly at 12°C over at least 200 generations. Relative to the parental population, the maximal growth rate (µ(max)) under the restrictive conditions, increased gradually over the time course of the experiment. This increase was accompanied by enhanced freeze tolerance. However, these changes were not the consequence of genetic adaptation to low temperature, a fact that was confirmed by prolonged selection of yeast cells in YPD at 12°C. Instead, the experimental populations showed a progressive increase in NaCl tolerance. This phenotype was likely achieved at the expense of others traits, since evolved cells showed a ploidy reduction, a defect in the glucose derepression mechanism and a loss in their ability to utilize gluconeogenic carbon sources. We discuss the genetic flexibility of S. cerevisiae in terms of adaptation to the multiple constraints of the experimental design applied to drive adaptive evolution and the technologically advantageous phenotype of the evolved population. PMID:21255321

  6. Evolution of taxis responses in virtual bacteria: non-adaptive dynamics.

    PubMed

    Goldstein, Richard A; Soyer, Orkun S

    2008-05-23

    Bacteria are able to sense and respond to a variety of external stimuli, with responses that vary from stimuli to stimuli and from species to species. The best-understood is chemotaxis in the model organism Escherichia coli, where the dynamics and the structure of the underlying pathway are well characterised. It is not clear, however, how well this detailed knowledge applies to mechanisms mediating responses to other stimuli or to pathways in other species. Furthermore, there is increasing experimental evidence that bacteria integrate responses from different stimuli to generate a coherent taxis response. We currently lack a full understanding of the different pathway structures and dynamics and how this integration is achieved. In order to explore different pathway structures and dynamics that can underlie taxis responses in bacteria, we perform a computational simulation of the evolution of taxis. This approach starts with a population of virtual bacteria that move in a virtual environment based on the dynamics of the simple biochemical pathways they harbour. As mutations lead to changes in pathway structure and dynamics, bacteria better able to localise with favourable conditions gain a selective advantage. We find that a certain dynamics evolves consistently under different model assumptions and environments. These dynamics, which we call non-adaptive dynamics, directly couple tumbling probability of the cell to increasing stimuli. Dynamics that are adaptive under a wide range of conditions, as seen in the chemotaxis pathway of E. coli, do not evolve in these evolutionary simulations. However, we find that stimulus scarcity and fluctuations during evolution results in complex pathway dynamics that result both in adaptive and non-adaptive dynamics depending on basal stimuli levels. Further analyses of evolved pathway structures show that effective taxis dynamics can be mediated with as few as two components. The non-adaptive dynamics mediating taxis responses

  7. The relation between recombination rate and patterns of molecular evolution and variation in Drosophila melanogaster.

    PubMed

    Campos, José L; Halligan, Daniel L; Haddrill, Penelope R; Charlesworth, Brian

    2014-04-01

    Genetic recombination associated with sexual reproduction increases the efficiency of natural selection by reducing the strength of Hill-Robertson interference. Such interference can be caused either by selective sweeps of positively selected alleles or by background selection (BGS) against deleterious mutations. Its consequences can be studied by comparing patterns of molecular evolution and variation in genomic regions with different rates of crossing over. We carried out a comprehensive study of the benefits of recombination in Drosophila melanogaster, both by contrasting five independent genomic regions that lack crossing over with the rest of the genome and by comparing regions with different rates of crossing over, using data on DNA sequence polymorphisms from an African population that is geographically close to the putatively ancestral population for the species, and on sequence divergence from a related species. We observed reductions in sequence diversity in noncrossover (NC) regions that are inconsistent with the effects of hard selective sweeps in the absence of recombination. Overall, the observed patterns suggest that the recombination rate experienced by a gene is positively related to an increase in the efficiency of both positive and purifying selection. The results are consistent with a BGS model with interference among selected sites in NC regions, and joint effects of BGS, selective sweeps, and a past population expansion on variability in regions of the genome that experience crossing over. In such crossover regions, the X chromosome exhibits a higher rate of adaptive protein sequence evolution than the autosomes, implying a Faster-X effect.

  8. Molecular phylogeny and character evolution in terete-stemmed Andean opuntias (Cactaceae-Opuntioideae).

    PubMed

    Ritz, C M; Reiker, J; Charles, G; Hoxey, P; Hunt, D; Lowry, M; Stuppy, W; Taylor, N

    2012-11-01

    The cacti of tribe Tephrocacteae (Cactaceae-Opuntioideae) are adapted to diverse climatic conditions over a wide area of the southern Andes and adjacent lowlands. They exhibit a range of life forms from geophytes and cushion-plants to dwarf shrubs, shrubs or small trees. To confirm or challenge previous morphology-based classifications and molecular phylogenies, we sampled DNA sequences from the chloroplast trnK/matK region and the nuclear low copy gene phyC and compared the resulting phylogenies with previous data gathered from nuclear ribosomal DNA sequences. The here presented chloroplast and nuclear low copy gene phylogenies were mutually congruent and broadly coincident with the classification based on gross morphology and seed micro-morphology and anatomy. Reconstruction of hypothetical ancestral character states suggested that geophytes and cushion-forming species probably evolved several times from dwarf shrubby precursors. We also traced an increase of embryo size at the expense of the nucellus-derived storage tissue during the evolution of the Tephrocacteae, which is thought to be an evolutionary advantage because nutrients are then more rapidly accessible for the germinating embryo. In contrast to these highly concordant phylogenies, nuclear ribosomal DNA data sampled by a previous study yielded conflicting phylogenetic signals. Secondary structure predictions of ribosomal transcribed spacers suggested that this phylogeny is strongly influenced by the inclusion of paralogous sequence probably arisen by genome duplication during the evolution of this plant group.

  9. The molecular origin and evolution of dim-light vision in mammals.

    PubMed

    Bickelmann, Constanze; Morrow, James M; Du, Jing; Schott, Ryan K; van Hazel, Ilke; Lim, Steve; Müller, Johannes; Chang, Belinda S W

    2015-11-01

    The nocturnal origin of mammals is a longstanding hypothesis that is considered instrumental for the evolution of endothermy, a potential key innovation in this successful clade. This hypothesis is primarily based on indirect anatomical inference from fossils. Here, we reconstruct the evolutionary history of rhodopsin--the vertebrate visual pigment mediating the first step in phototransduction at low-light levels--via codon-based model tests for selection, combined with gene resurrection methods that allow for the study of ancient proteins. Rhodopsin coding sequences were reconstructed for three key nodes: Amniota, Mammalia, and Theria. When expressed in vitro, all sequences generated stable visual pigments with λMAX values similar to the well-studied bovine rhodopsin. Retinal release rates of mammalian and therian ancestral rhodopsins, measured via fluorescence spectroscopy, were significantly slower than those of the amniote ancestor, indicating altered molecular function possibly related to nocturnality. Positive selection along the therian branch suggests adaptive evolution in rhodopsin concurrent with therian ecological diversification events during the Mesozoic that allowed for an exploration of the environment at varying light levels.

  10. The molecular origin and evolution of dim-light vision in mammals.

    PubMed

    Bickelmann, Constanze; Morrow, James M; Du, Jing; Schott, Ryan K; van Hazel, Ilke; Lim, Steve; Müller, Johannes; Chang, Belinda S W

    2015-11-01

    The nocturnal origin of mammals is a longstanding hypothesis that is considered instrumental for the evolution of endothermy, a potential key innovation in this successful clade. This hypothesis is primarily based on indirect anatomical inference from fossils. Here, we reconstruct the evolutionary history of rhodopsin--the vertebrate visual pigment mediating the first step in phototransduction at low-light levels--via codon-based model tests for selection, combined with gene resurrection methods that allow for the study of ancient proteins. Rhodopsin coding sequences were reconstructed for three key nodes: Amniota, Mammalia, and Theria. When expressed in vitro, all sequences generated stable visual pigments with λMAX values similar to the well-studied bovine rhodopsin. Retinal release rates of mammalian and therian ancestral rhodopsins, measured via fluorescence spectroscopy, were significantly slower than those of the amniote ancestor, indicating altered molecular function possibly related to nocturnality. Positive selection along the therian branch suggests adaptive evolution in rhodopsin concurrent with therian ecological diversification events during the Mesozoic that allowed for an exploration of the environment at varying light levels. PMID:26536060

  11. Molecular Evolution of the Yersinia Major Outer Membrane Protein C (OmpC)

    PubMed Central

    Stenkova, Anna M.; Bystritskaya, Evgeniya P.; Guzev, Konstantin V.; Rakin, Alexander V.; Isaeva, Marina P.

    2016-01-01

    The genus Yersinia includes species with a wide range of eukaryotic hosts (from fish, insects, and plants to mammals and humans). One of the major outer membrane proteins, the porin OmpC, is preferentially expressed in the host gut, where osmotic pressure, temperature, and the concentrations of nutrients and toxic products are relatively high. We consider here the molecular evolution and phylogeny of Yersinia ompC. The maximum likelihood gene tree reflects the macroevolution processes occurring within the genus Yersinia. Positive selection and horizontal gene transfer are the key factors of ompC diversification, and intraspecies recombination was revealed in two Yersinia species. The impact of recombination on ompC evolution was different from that of another major porin gene, ompF, possibly due to the emergence of additional functions and conservation of the basic transport function. The predicted antigenic determinants of OmpC were located in rapidly evolving regions, which may indicate the evolutionary mechanisms of Yersinia adaptation to the host immune system. PMID:27578962

  12. Molecular Evolution of the Yersinia Major Outer Membrane Protein C (OmpC).

    PubMed

    Stenkova, Anna M; Bystritskaya, Evgeniya P; Guzev, Konstantin V; Rakin, Alexander V; Isaeva, Marina P

    2016-01-01

    The genus Yersinia includes species with a wide range of eukaryotic hosts (from fish, insects, and plants to mammals and humans). One of the major outer membrane proteins, the porin OmpC, is preferentially expressed in the host gut, where osmotic pressure, temperature, and the concentrations of nutrients and toxic products are relatively high. We consider here the molecular evolution and phylogeny of Yersinia ompC. The maximum likelihood gene tree reflects the macroevolution processes occurring within the genus Yersinia. Positive selection and horizontal gene transfer are the key factors of ompC diversification, and intraspecies recombination was revealed in two Yersinia species. The impact of recombination on ompC evolution was different from that of another major porin gene, ompF, possibly due to the emergence of additional functions and conservation of the basic transport function. The predicted antigenic determinants of OmpC were located in rapidly evolving regions, which may indicate the evolutionary mechanisms of Yersinia adaptation to the host immune system. PMID:27578962

  13. [Molecular genetic bases of adaptation processes and approaches to their analysis].

    PubMed

    Salmenkova, E A

    2013-01-01

    Great interest in studying the molecular genetic bases of the adaptation processes is explained by their importance in understanding evolutionary changes, in the development ofintraspecific and interspecific genetic diversity, and in the creation of approaches and programs for maintaining and restoring the population. The article examines the sources and conditions for generating adaptive genetic variability and contribution of neutral and adaptive genetic variability to the population structure of the species; methods for identifying the adaptive genetic variability on the genome level are also described. Considerable attention is paid to the potential of new technologies of genome analysis, including next-generation sequencing and some accompanying methods. In conclusion, the important role of the joint use of genomics and proteomics approaches in understanding the molecular genetic bases of adaptation is emphasized.

  14. Dynamics of molecular evolution and phylogeography of Barley yellow dwarf virus-PAV.

    PubMed

    Wu, Beilei; Blanchard-Letort, Alexandra; Liu, Yan; Zhou, Guanghe; Wang, Xifeng; Elena, Santiago F

    2011-01-01

    Barley yellow dwarf virus (BYDV) species PAV occurs frequently in irrigated wheat fields worldwide and can be efficiently transmitted by aphids. Isolates of BYDV-PAV from different countries show great divergence both in genomic sequences and pathogenicity. Despite its economical importance, the genetic structure of natural BYDV-PAV populations, as well as of the mechanisms maintaining its high diversity, remain poorly explored. In this study, we investigate the dynamics of BYDV-PAV genome evolution utilizing time-structured data sets of complete genomic sequences from 58 isolates from different hosts obtained worldwide. First, we observed that BYDV-PAV exhibits a high frequency of homologous recombination. Second, our analysis revealed that BYDV-PAV genome evolves under purifying selection and at a substitution rate similar to other RNA viruses (3.158×10(-4) nucleotide substitutions/site/year). Phylogeography analyses show that the diversification of BYDV-PAV can be explained by local geographic adaptation as well as by host-driven adaptation. These results increase our understanding of the diversity, molecular evolutionary characteristics and epidemiological properties of an economically important plant RNA virus. PMID:21326861

  15. Fast molecular evolution associated with high active metabolic rates in poison frogs.

    PubMed

    Santos, Juan C

    2012-08-01

    Molecular evolution is simultaneously paced by mutation rate, genetic drift, and natural selection. Life history traits also affect the speed of accumulation of nucleotide changes. For instance, small body size, rapid generation time, production of reactive oxygen species (ROS), and high resting metabolic rate (RMR) are suggested to be associated with faster rates of molecular evolution. However, phylogenetic correlation analyses failed to support a relationship between RMR and molecular evolution in ectotherms. In addition, RMR might underestimate the metabolic budget (e.g., digestion, reproduction, or escaping predation). An alternative is to test other metabolic rates, such as active metabolic rate (AMR), and their association with molecular evolution. Here, I present comparative analyses of the associations between life history traits (i.e., AMR, RMR, body mass, and fecundity) with rates of molecular evolution of and mitochondrial loci from a large ectotherm clade, the poison frogs (Dendrobatidae). My results support a strong positive association between mass-specific AMR and rates of molecular evolution for both mitochondrial and nuclear loci. In addition, I found weaker and genome-specific covariates such as body mass and fecundity for mitochondrial and nuclear loci, respectively. No direct association was found between mass-specific RMR and rates of molecular evolution. Thus, I provide a mechanistic hypothesis of the link between AMRs and the rate of molecular evolution based on an increase in ROS within germ line cells during periodic bouts of hypoxia/hyperoxia related to aerobic exercise. Finally, I propose a multifactorial model that includes AMR as a predictor of the rate of molecular evolution in ectothermic lineages.

  16. Molecular adaptations in psychrophilic bacteria: potential for biotechnological applications.

    PubMed

    Russell, N J

    1998-01-01

    Bacteria which live in cold conditions are known as psychrophiles. Since so much of our planet is generally cold, i.e. below 5 degrees C, it is not surprising that they are very common amongst a wide variety of habitats. To enable them to survive and grow in cold environments, psychrophilic bacteria have evolved a complex range of adaptations to all of their cellular components, including their membranes, energy-generating systems, protein synthesis machinery, biodegradative enzymes and the components responsible for nutrient uptake. Whilst such a systems approach to the topic has its advantages, all of the changes can be described in terms of adaptive alterations in the proteins and lipids of the bacterial cell. The present review adopts the latter approach and, following a brief consideration of the definition of psychrophiles and description of their habitats, focuses on those adaptive changes in proteins and lipids, especially those which are either currently being explored for their biotechnological potential or might be so in the future. Such applications for proteins range from the use of cold-active enzymes in the detergent and food industries, in specific biotransformations and environmental bioremediations, to specialised uses in contact lens cleaning fluids and reducing the lactose content of milk; ice-nucleating proteins have potential uses in the manufacture of ice cream or artificial snow; for lipids, the uses include dietary supplements in the form of polyunsaturated fatty acids from some Antarctic marine psychrophiles.

  17. Comprehensive molecular characterization of Methylobacterium extorquens AM1 adapted for 1-butanol tolerance

    DOE PAGES

    Hu, Bo; Yang, Yi -Ming; Beck, David A. C.; Wang, Qian -Wen; Chen, Wen -Jing; Yang, Jing; Lidstrom, Mary E.; Yang, Song

    2016-04-11

    In this study, the toxicity of alcohols is one of the major roadblocks of biological fermentation for biofuels production. Methylobacterium extorquens AM1, a facultative methylotrophic α-proteobacterium, has been engineered to generate 1-butanol from cheap carbon feedstocks through a synthetic metabolic pathway. However, M. extorquens AM1 is vulnerable to solvent stress, which impedes further development for 1-butanol production. Only a few studies have reported the general stress response of M. extorquens AM1 to solvent stress. Therefore, it is highly desirable to obtain a strain with ameliorated 1-butanol tolerance and elucidate the molecular mechanism of 1-butnaol tolerance in M. extorquens AM1 formore » future strain improvement. In this work, adaptive laboratory evolution was used as a tool to isolate mutants with 1-butanol tolerance up to 0.5 %. The evolved strains, BHBT3 and BHBT5, demonstrated increased growth rates and higher survival rates with the existence of 1-butanol. Whole genome sequencing revealed a SNP mutation at kefB in BHBT5, which was confirmed to be responsible for increasing 1-butanol tolerance through an allelic exchange experiment. Global metabolomic analysis further discovered that the pools of multiple key metabolites, including fatty acids, amino acids, and disaccharides, were increased in BHBT5 in response to 1-butanol stress. Additionally, the carotenoid synthesis pathway was significantly down-regulated in BHBT5. In conclusion, we successfully screened mutants resistant to 1-butanol and provided insights into the molecular mechanism of 1-butanol tolerance in M. extorquens AM1. This research will be useful for uncovering the mechanism of cellular response of M. extorquens AM1 to solvent stress, and will provide the genetic blueprint for the rational design of a strain of M. extorquens AM1 with increased 1-butanol tolerance in the future.« less

  18. Molecular evolution of the crustacean hyperglycemic hormone family in ecdysozoans

    PubMed Central

    2010-01-01

    Background Crustacean Hyperglycemic Hormone (CHH) family peptides are neurohormones known to regulate several important functions in decapod crustaceans such as ionic and energetic metabolism, molting and reproduction. The structural conservation of these peptides, together with the variety of functions they display, led us to investigate their evolutionary history. CHH family peptides exist in insects (Ion Transport Peptides) and may be present in all ecdysozoans as well. In order to extend the evolutionary study to the entire family, CHH family peptides were thus searched in taxa outside decapods, where they have been, to date, poorly investigated. Results CHH family peptides were characterized by molecular cloning in a branchiopod crustacean, Daphnia magna, and in a collembolan, Folsomia candida. Genes encoding such peptides were also rebuilt in silico from genomic sequences of another branchiopod, a chelicerate and two nematodes. These sequences were included in updated datasets to build phylogenies of the CHH family in pancrustaceans. These phylogenies suggest that peptides found in Branchiopoda and Collembola are more closely related to insect ITPs than to crustacean CHHs. Datasets were also used to support a phylogenetic hypothesis about pancrustacean relationships, which, in addition to gene structures, allowed us to propose two evolutionary scenarios of this multigenic family in ecdysozoans. Conclusions Evolutionary scenarios suggest that CHH family genes of ecdysozoans originate from an ancestral two-exon gene, and genes of arthropods from a three-exon one. In malacostracans, the evolution of the CHH family has involved several duplication, insertion or deletion events, leading to neuropeptides with a wide variety of functions, as observed in decapods. This family could thus constitute a promising model to investigate the links between gene duplications and functional divergence. PMID:20184761

  19. Ecological adaptation and species recognition drives vocal evolution in neotropical suboscine birds.

    PubMed

    Seddon, Nathalie

    2005-01-01

    Given that evolutionary divergence in mating signals leads to reproductive isolation in numerous animal taxa, understanding what drives signal divergence is fundamental to our understanding of speciation. Mating signals are thought to diverge via several processes, including (1) as a by-product of morphological adaptation, (2) through direct adaptation to the signaling environment, or (3) to facilitate species recognition. According to the first two hypotheses, birdsongs diversify in different foraging niches and habitats as a product of selection for optimal morphology and efficient sound transmission, respectively. According to the third hypothesis, they diversify as a result of selection against maladaptive hybridization. In this study I test all three hypotheses by examining the influence of morphology, acoustic environment, and the presence of closely related congeners on song structure in 163 species of antbird (Thamnophilidae). Unlike oscine passerines, these Neotropical suboscines make ideal subjects because they develop their songs without learning. In other words, patterns of vocal divergence are not complicated by cultural evolution. In support of the morphological adaptation hypothesis, body mass correlates with the acoustic frequency of songs, and bill size with temporal patterning. These relationships were robust, even when controlling for phylogenetic inertia using independent contrasts, suggesting that there has been correlated evolution between morphological and acoustic traits. The results also support the acoustic adaptation hypothesis: birds which habitually sing in the understory and canopy produce higher-pitched songs than those that sing in the midstory, suggesting that song structure is related to the sound transmission properties of different habitat strata. Finally, the songs of sympatric pairs of closely related species are more divergent than those of allopatric pairs, as predicted by the species recognition hypothesis. To my knowledge

  20. Ecological adaptation and species recognition drives vocal evolution in neotropical suboscine birds.

    PubMed

    Seddon, Nathalie

    2005-01-01

    Given that evolutionary divergence in mating signals leads to reproductive isolation in numerous animal taxa, understanding what drives signal divergence is fundamental to our understanding of speciation. Mating signals are thought to diverge via several processes, including (1) as a by-product of morphological adaptation, (2) through direct adaptation to the signaling environment, or (3) to facilitate species recognition. According to the first two hypotheses, birdsongs diversify in different foraging niches and habitats as a product of selection for optimal morphology and efficient sound transmission, respectively. According to the third hypothesis, they diversify as a result of selection against maladaptive hybridization. In this study I test all three hypotheses by examining the influence of morphology, acoustic environment, and the presence of closely related congeners on song structure in 163 species of antbird (Thamnophilidae). Unlike oscine passerines, these Neotropical suboscines make ideal subjects because they develop their songs without learning. In other words, patterns of vocal divergence are not complicated by cultural evolution. In support of the morphological adaptation hypothesis, body mass correlates with the acoustic frequency of songs, and bill size with temporal patterning. These relationships were robust, even when controlling for phylogenetic inertia using independent contrasts, suggesting that there has been correlated evolution between morphological and acoustic traits. The results also support the acoustic adaptation hypothesis: birds which habitually sing in the understory and canopy produce higher-pitched songs than those that sing in the midstory, suggesting that song structure is related to the sound transmission properties of different habitat strata. Finally, the songs of sympatric pairs of closely related species are more divergent than those of allopatric pairs, as predicted by the species recognition hypothesis. To my knowledge

  1. From Environment to Man: Genome Evolution and Adaptation of Human Opportunistic Bacterial Pathogens

    PubMed Central

    Aujoulat, Fabien; Roger, Frédéric; Bourdier, Alice; Lotthé, Anne; Lamy, Brigitte; Marchandin, Hélène; Jumas-Bilak, Estelle

    2012-01-01

    Environment is recognized as a huge reservoir for bacterial species and a source of human pathogens. Some environmental bacteria have an extraordinary range of activities that include promotion of plant growth or disease, breakdown of pollutants, production of original biomolecules, but also multidrug resistance and human pathogenicity. The versatility of bacterial life-style involves adaptation to various niches. Adaptation to both open environment and human specific niches is a major challenge that involves intermediate organisms allowing pre-adaptation to humans. The aim of this review is to analyze genomic features of environmental bacteria in order to explain their adaptation to human beings. The genera Pseudomonas, Aeromonas and Ochrobactrum provide valuable examples of opportunistic behavior associated to particular genomic structure and evolution. Particularly, we performed original genomic comparisons among aeromonads and between the strictly intracellular pathogens Brucella spp. and the mild opportunistic pathogens Ochrobactrum spp. We conclude that the adaptation to human could coincide with a speciation in action revealed by modifications in both genomic and population structures. This adaptation-driven speciation could be a major mechanism for the emergence of true pathogens besides the acquisition of specialized virulence factors. PMID:24704914

  2. The red queen in the corn: agricultural weeds as models of rapid adaptive evolution.

    PubMed

    Vigueira, C C; Olsen, K M; Caicedo, A L

    2013-04-01

    Weeds are among the greatest pests of agriculture, causing billions of dollars in crop losses each year. As crop field management practices have changed over the past 12 000 years, weeds have adapted in turn to evade human removal. This evolutionary change can be startlingly rapid, making weeds an appealing system to study evolutionary processes that occur over short periods of time. An understanding of how weeds originate and adapt is needed for successful management; however, relatively little emphasis has been placed on genetically characterizing these systems. Here, we review the current literature on agricultural weed origins and their mechanisms of adaptation. Where possible, we have included examples that have been genetically well characterized. Evidence for three possible, non-mutually exclusive weed origins (from wild species, crop-wild hybrids or directly from crops) is discussed with respect to what is known about the microevolutionary signatures that result from these processes. We also discuss what is known about the genetic basis of adaptive traits in weeds and the range of genetic mechanisms that are responsible. With a better understanding of genetic mechanisms underlying adaptation in weedy species, we can address the more general process of adaptive evolution and what can be expected as we continue to apply selective pressures in agroecosystems around the world.

  3. The red queen in the corn: agricultural weeds as models of rapid adaptive evolution

    PubMed Central

    Vigueira, C C; Olsen, K M; Caicedo, A L

    2013-01-01

    Weeds are among the greatest pests of agriculture, causing billions of dollars in crop losses each year. As crop field management practices have changed over the past 12 000 years, weeds have adapted in turn to evade human removal. This evolutionary change can be startlingly rapid, making weeds an appealing system to study evolutionary processes that occur over short periods of time. An understanding of how weeds originate and adapt is needed for successful management; however, relatively little emphasis has been placed on genetically characterizing these systems. Here, we review the current literature on agricultural weed origins and their mechanisms of adaptation. Where possible, we have included examples that have been genetically well characterized. Evidence for three possible, non-mutually exclusive weed origins (from wild species, crop-wild hybrids or directly from crops) is discussed with respect to what is known about the microevolutionary signatures that result from these processes. We also discuss what is known about the genetic basis of adaptive traits in weeds and the range of genetic mechanisms that are responsible. With a better understanding of genetic mechanisms underlying adaptation in weedy species, we can address the more general process of adaptive evolution and what can be expected as we continue to apply selective pressures in agroecosystems around the world. PMID:23188175

  4. Molecular Evolution and Functional Divergence of Trace Amine-Associated Receptors.

    PubMed

    Eyun, Seong-Il; Moriyama, Hideaki; Hoffmann, Federico G; Moriyama, Etsuko N

    2016-01-01

    Trace amine-associated receptors (TAARs) are a member of the G-protein-coupled receptor superfamily and are known to be expressed in olfactory sensory neurons. A limited number of molecular evolutionary studies have been done for TAARs so far. To elucidate how lineage-specific evolution contributed to their functional divergence, we examined 30 metazoan genomes. In total, 493 TAAR gene candidates (including 84 pseudogenes) were identified from 26 vertebrate genomes. TAARs were not identified from non-vertebrate genomes. An ancestral-type TAAR-like gene appeared to have emerged in lamprey. We found four therian-specific TAAR subfamilies (one eutherian-specific and three metatherian-specific) in addition to previously known nine subfamilies. Many species-specific TAAR gene duplications and losses contributed to a large variation of TAAR gene numbers among mammals, ranging from 0 in dolphin to 26 in flying fox. TAARs are classified into two groups based on binding preferences for primary or tertiary amines as well as their sequence similarities. Primary amine-detecting TAARs (TAAR1-4) have emerged earlier, generally have single-copy orthologs (very few duplication or loss), and have evolved under strong functional constraints. In contrast, tertiary amine-detecting TAARs (TAAR5-9) have emerged more recently and the majority of them experienced higher rates of gene duplications. Protein members that belong to the tertiary amine-detecting TAAR group also showed the patterns of positive selection especially in the area surrounding the ligand-binding pocket, which could have affected ligand-binding activities and specificities. Expansions of the tertiary amine-detecting TAAR gene family may have played important roles in terrestrial adaptations of therian mammals. Molecular evolution of the TAAR gene family appears to be governed by a complex, species-specific, interplay between environmental and evolutionary factors. PMID:26963722

  5. Molecular Evolution and Functional Divergence of Trace Amine–Associated Receptors

    PubMed Central

    Eyun, Seong-il; Moriyama, Hideaki; Hoffmann, Federico G.; Moriyama, Etsuko N.

    2016-01-01

    Trace amine-associated receptors (TAARs) are a member of the G-protein-coupled receptor superfamily and are known to be expressed in olfactory sensory neurons. A limited number of molecular evolutionary studies have been done for TAARs so far. To elucidate how lineage-specific evolution contributed to their functional divergence, we examined 30 metazoan genomes. In total, 493 TAAR gene candidates (including 84 pseudogenes) were identified from 26 vertebrate genomes. TAARs were not identified from non-vertebrate genomes. An ancestral-type TAAR-like gene appeared to have emerged in lamprey. We found four therian-specific TAAR subfamilies (one eutherian-specific and three metatherian-specific) in addition to previously known nine subfamilies. Many species-specific TAAR gene duplications and losses contributed to a large variation of TAAR gene numbers among mammals, ranging from 0 in dolphin to 26 in flying fox. TAARs are classified into two groups based on binding preferences for primary or tertiary amines as well as their sequence similarities. Primary amine-detecting TAARs (TAAR1-4) have emerged earlier, generally have single-copy orthologs (very few duplication or loss), and have evolved under strong functional constraints. In contrast, tertiary amine-detecting TAARs (TAAR5-9) have emerged more recently and the majority of them experienced higher rates of gene duplications. Protein members that belong to the tertiary amine-detecting TAAR group also showed the patterns of positive selection especially in the area surrounding the ligand-binding pocket, which could have affected ligand-binding activities and specificities. Expansions of the tertiary amine-detecting TAAR gene family may have played important roles in terrestrial adaptations of therian mammals. Molecular evolution of the TAAR gene family appears to be governed by a complex, species-specific, interplay between environmental and evolutionary factors. PMID:26963722

  6. Evolution of regulatory networks towards adaptability and stability in a changing environment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lee, Deok-Sun

    2014-11-01

    Diverse biological networks exhibit universal features distinguished from those of random networks, calling much attention to their origins and implications. Here we propose a minimal evolution model of Boolean regulatory networks, which evolve by selectively rewiring links towards enhancing adaptability to a changing environment and stability against dynamical perturbations. We find that sparse and heterogeneous connectivity patterns emerge, which show qualitative agreement with real transcriptional regulatory networks and metabolic networks. The characteristic scaling behavior of stability reflects the balance between robustness and flexibility. The scaling of fluctuation in the perturbation spread shows a dynamic crossover, which is analyzed by investigating separately the stochasticity of internal dynamics and the network structure differences depending on the evolution pathways. Our study delineates how the ambivalent pressure of evolution shapes biological networks, which can be helpful for studying general complex systems interacting with environments.

  7. Microevolutionary, macroevolutionary, ecological and taxonomical implications of punctuational theories of adaptive evolution.

    PubMed

    Flegr, Jaroslav

    2013-01-16

    Punctuational theories of evolution suggest that adaptive evolution proceeds mostly, or even entirely, in the distinct periods of existence of a particular species. The mechanisms of this punctuated nature of evolution suggested by the various theories differ. Therefore the predictions of particular theories concerning various evolutionary phenomena also differ.Punctuational theories can be subdivided into five classes, which differ in their mechanism and their evolutionary and ecological implications. For example, the transilience model of Templeton (class III), genetic revolution model of Mayr (class IV) or the frozen plasticity theory of Flegr (class V), suggests that adaptive evolution in sexual species is operative shortly after the emergence of a species by peripatric speciation--while it is evolutionary plastic. To a major degree, i.e. throughout 98-99% of their existence, sexual species are evolutionarily frozen (class III) or elastic (class IV and V) on a microevolutionary time scale and evolutionarily frozen on a macroevolutionary time scale and can only wait for extinction, or the highly improbable return of a population segment to the plastic state due to peripatric speciation.The punctuational theories have many evolutionary and ecological implications. Most of these predictions could be tested empirically, and should be analyzed in greater depth theoretically. The punctuational theories offer many new predictions that need to be tested, but also provide explanations for a much broader spectrum of known biological phenomena than classical gradualistic evolutionary theories.

  8. Adaptive evolution in locomotor performance: How selective pressures and functional relationships produce diversity.

    PubMed

    Scales, Jeffrey A; Butler, Marguerite A

    2016-01-01

    Despite the complexity of nature, most comparative studies of phenotypic evolution consider selective pressures in isolation. When competing pressures operate on the same system, it is commonly expected that trade-offs will occur that will limit the evolution of phenotypic diversity, however, it is possible that interactions among selective pressures may promote diversity instead. We explored the evolution of locomotor performance in lizards in relation to possible selective pressures using the Ornstein-Uhlenbeck process. Here, we show that a combination of selection based on foraging mode and predator escape is required to explain variation in performance phenotypes. Surprisingly, habitat use contributed little explanatory power. We find that it is possible to evolve very different abilities in performance which were previously thought to be tightly correlated, supporting a growing literature that explores the many-to-one mapping of morphological design. Although we generally find the expected trade-off between maximal exertion and speed, this relationship surprisingly disappears when species experience selection for both performance types. We conclude that functional integration need not limit adaptive potential, and that an integrative approach considering multiple major influences on a phenotype allows a more complete understanding of adaptation and the evolution of diversity.

  9. Microevolutionary, macroevolutionary, ecological and taxonomical implications of punctuational theories of adaptive evolution

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Abstract Punctuational theories of evolution suggest that adaptive evolution proceeds mostly, or even entirely, in the distinct periods of existence of a particular species. The mechanisms of this punctuated nature of evolution suggested by the various theories differ. Therefore the predictions of particular theories concerning various evolutionary phenomena also differ. Punctuational theories can be subdivided into five classes, which differ in their mechanism and their evolutionary and ecological implications. For example, the transilience model of Templeton (class III), genetic revolution model of Mayr (class IV) or the frozen plasticity theory of Flegr (class V), suggests that adaptive evolution in sexual species is operative shortly after the emergence of a species by peripatric speciation – while it is evolutionary plastic. To a major degree, i.e. throughout 98-99% of their existence, sexual species are evolutionarily frozen (class III) or elastic (class IV and V) on a microevolutionary time scale and evolutionarily frozen on a macroevolutionary time scale and can only wait for extinction, or the highly improbable return of a population segment to the plastic state due to peripatric speciation. The punctuational theories have many evolutionary and ecological implications. Most of these predictions could be tested empirically, and should be analyzed in greater depth theoretically. The punctuational theories offer many new predictions that need to be tested, but also provide explanations for a much broader spectrum of known biological phenomena than classical gradualistic evolutionary theories. Reviewers This article was reviewed by Claus Wilke, Pierre Pantarotti and David Penny (nominated by Anthony Poole). PMID:23324625

  10. Reversible adapting layer produces robust single-crystal electrocatalyst for oxygen evolution

    PubMed Central

    Tung, Ching-Wei; Hsu, Ying-Ya; Shen, Yen-Ping; Zheng, Yixin; Chan, Ting-Shan; Sheu, Hwo-Shuenn; Cheng, Yuan-Chung; Chen, Hao Ming

    2015-01-01

    Electrochemically converting water into oxygen/hydrogen gas is ideal for high-density renewable energy storage in which robust electrocatalysts for efficient oxygen evolution play crucial roles. To date, however, electrocatalysts with long-term stability have remained elusive. Here we report that single-crystal Co3O4 nanocube underlay with a thin CoO layer results in a high-performance and high-stability electrocatalyst in oxygen evolution reaction. An in situ X-ray diffraction method is developed to observe a strong correlation between the initialization of the oxygen evolution and the formation of active metal oxyhydroxide phase. The lattice of skin layer adapts to the structure of the active phase, which enables a reversible facile structural change that facilitates the chemical reactions without breaking the scaffold of the electrocatalysts. The single-crystal nanocube electrode exhibits stable, continuous oxygen evolution for >1,000 h. This robust stability is attributed to the complementary nature of defect-free single-crystal electrocatalyst and the reversible adapting layer. PMID:26315066

  11. Analysis of Adaptive Evolution in Lyssavirus Genomes Reveals Pervasive Diversifying Selection during Species Diversification

    PubMed Central

    Voloch, Carolina M.; Capellão, Renata T.; Mello, Beatriz; Schrago, Carlos G.

    2014-01-01

    Lyssavirus is a diverse genus of viruses that infect a variety of mammalian hosts, typically causing encephalitis. The evolution of this lineage, particularly the rabies virus, has been a focus of research because of the extensive occurrence of cross-species transmission, and the distinctive geographical patterns present throughout the diversification of these viruses. Although numerous studies have examined pattern-related questions concerning Lyssavirus evolution, analyses of the evolutionary processes acting on Lyssavirus diversification are scarce. To clarify the relevance of positive natural selection in Lyssavirus diversification, we conducted a comprehensive scan for episodic diversifying selection across all lineages and codon sites of the five coding regions in lyssavirus genomes. Although the genomes of these viruses are generally conserved, the glycoprotein (G), RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (L) and polymerase (P) genes were frequently targets of adaptive evolution during the diversification of the genus. Adaptive evolution is particularly manifest in the glycoprotein gene, which was inferred to have experienced the highest density of positively selected codon sites along branches. Substitutions in the L gene were found to be associated with the early diversification of phylogroups. A comparison between the number of positively selected sites inferred along the branches of RABV population branches and Lyssavirus intespecies branches suggested that the occurrence of positive selection was similar on the five coding regions of the genome in both groups. PMID:25415197

  12. Adaptive evolution of recently duplicated accessory gland protein genes in desert Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Wagstaff, Bradley J; Begun, David J

    2007-10-01

    The relationship between animal mating system variation and patterns of protein polymorphism and divergence is poorly understood. Drosophila provides an excellent system for addressing this issue, as there is abundant interspecific mating system variation. For example, compared to D. melanogaster subgroup species, repleta group species have higher remating rates, delayed sexual maturity, and several other interesting differences. We previously showed that accessory gland protein genes (Acp's) of Drosophila mojavensis and D. arizonae evolve more rapidly than Acp's in the D. melanogaster subgroup and that adaptive Acp protein evolution is likely more common in D. mojavensis/D. arizonae than in D. melanogaster/D. simulans. These findings are consistent with the idea that greater postcopulatory selection results in more adaptive evolution of seminal fluid proteins in the repleta group flies. Here we report another interesting evolutionary difference between the repleta group and the D. melanogaster subgroup Acp's. Acp gene duplications are present in D. melanogaster, but their high sequence divergence indicates that the fixation rate of duplicated Acp's has been low in this lineage. Here we report that D. mojavensis and D. arizonae genomes contain several very young duplicated Acp's and that these Acp's have experienced very rapid, adaptive protein divergence. We propose that rapid remating of female desert Drosophila generates selection for continuous diversification of the male Acp complement to improve male fertilization potential. Thus, mating system variation may be associated with adaptive protein divergence as well as with duplication of Acp's in Drosophila.

  13. Evolution of adaptive diversity and genetic connectivity in Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus) in Iceland

    PubMed Central

    Kapralova, K H; Morrissey, M B; Kristjánsson, B K; Ólafsdóttir, G Á; Snorrason, S S; Ferguson, M M

    2011-01-01

    The ecological theory of adaptive radiation predicts that the evolution of phenotypic diversity within species is generated by divergent natural selection arising from different environments and competition between species. Genetic connectivity among populations is likely also to have an important role in both the origin and maintenance of adaptive genetic diversity. Our goal was to evaluate the potential roles of genetic connectivity and natural selection in the maintenance of adaptive phenotypic differences among morphs of Arctic charr, Salvelinus alpinus, in Iceland. At a large spatial scale, we tested the predictive power of geographic structure and phenotypic variation for patterns of neutral genetic variation among populations throughout Iceland. At a smaller scale, we evaluated the genetic differentiation between two morphs in Lake Thingvallavatn relative to historically explicit, coalescent-based null models of the evolutionary history of these lineages. At the large spatial scale, populations are highly differentiated, but weakly structured, both geographically and with respect to patterns of phenotypic variation. At the intralacustrine scale, we observe modest genetic differentiation between two morphs, but this level of differentiation is nonetheless consistent with strong reproductive isolation throughout the Holocene. Rather than a result of the homogenizing effect of gene flow in a system at migration-drift equilibrium, the modest level of genetic differentiation could equally be a result of slow neutral divergence by drift in large populations. We conclude that contemporary and recent patterns of restricted gene flow have been highly conducive to the evolution and maintenance of adaptive genetic variation in Icelandic Arctic charr. PMID:21224880

  14. Evidence for widespread adaptive evolution of gene expression in budding yeast.

    PubMed

    Fraser, Hunter B; Moses, Alan M; Schadt, Eric E

    2010-02-16

    Changes in gene expression have been proposed to underlie many, or even most, adaptive differences between species. Despite the increasing acceptance of this view, only a handful of cases of adaptive gene expression evolution have been demonstrated. To address this discrepancy, we introduce a simple test for lineage-specific selection on gene expression. Applying the test to genome-wide gene expression data from the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, we find that hundreds of gene expression levels have been subject to lineage-specific selection. Comparing these findings with independent population genetic evidence of selective sweeps suggests that this lineage-specific selection has resulted in recent sweeps at over a hundred genes, most of which led to increased transcript levels. Examination of the implicated genes revealed a specific biochemical pathway--ergosterol biosynthesis--where the expression of multiple genes has been subject to selection for reduced levels. In sum, these results suggest that adaptive evolution of gene expression is common in yeast, that regulatory adaptation can occur at the level of entire pathways, and that similar genome-wide scans may be possible in other species, including humans.

  15. The elusive nature of adaptive mitochondrial DNA evolution of an arctic lineage prone to frequent introgression.

    PubMed

    Melo-Ferreira, José; Vilela, Joana; Fonseca, Miguel M; da Fonseca, Rute R; Boursot, Pierre; Alves, Paulo C

    2014-04-01

    Mitochondria play a fundamental role in cellular metabolism, being responsible for most of the energy production of the cell in the oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) pathway. Mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) encodes for key components of this process, but its direct role in adaptation remains far from understood. Hares (Lepus spp.) are privileged models to study the impact of natural selection on mitogenomic evolution because 1) species are adapted to contrasting environments, including arctic, with different metabolic pressures, and 2) mtDNA introgression from arctic into temperate species is widespread. Here, we analyzed the sequences of 11 complete mitogenomes (ten newly obtained) of hares of temperate and arctic origins (including two of arctic origin introgressed into temperate species). The analysis of patterns of codon substitutions along the reconstructed phylogeny showed evidence for positive selection in several codons in genes of the OXPHOS complexes, most notably affecting the arctic lineage. However, using theoretical models, no predictable effect of these differences was found on the structure and physicochemical properties of the encoded proteins, suggesting that the focus of selection may lie on complex interactions with nuclear encoded peptides. Also, a cloverleaf structure was detected in the control region only from the arctic mtDNA lineage, which may influence mtDNA replication and transcription. These results suggest that adaptation impacted the evolution of hare mtDNA and may have influenced the occurrence and consequences of the many reported cases of massive mtDNA introgression. However, the origin of adaptation remains elusive.

  16. Using Experimental Evolution to Study Adaptations for Life within the Family

    PubMed Central

    Schrader, Matthew; Jarrett, Benjamin J. M.; Kilner, Rebecca M.

    2015-01-01

    Parents of many species provision their young, and the extent of parental provisioning constitutes a major component of the offspring’s social environment. Thus, a change in parental provisioning can alter selection on offspring, resulting in the coevolution of parental and offspring traits. Although this reasoning is central to our evolutionary understanding of family life, there is little direct evidence that selection by parents causes evolutionary change in their offspring. Here we use experimental evolution to examine how populations of burying beetles adapt to a change in posthatching parental provisioning. We measured the performance of larvae descended from lab populations that had been maintained with and without posthatching parental care (Full Care and No Care populations). We found that adaptation to the absence of posthatching care led to rapid and consistent changes in larval survival in the absence of care. Specifically, larvae from No Care populations had higher survival in the absence of care than larvae from Full Care populations. Other measures of larval performance, such as the ability of larvae to consume a breeding carcass and larval mass at dispersal, did not differ between the Full Care and No Care populations. Nevertheless, our results show that populations can adapt rapidly to a change in the extent of parental care and that experimental evolution can be used to study such adaptation. PMID:25905504

  17. Evolution and Adaptation of Wild Emmer Wheat Populations to Biotic and Abiotic Stresses.

    PubMed

    Huang, Lin; Raats, Dina; Sela, Hanan; Klymiuk, Valentina; Lidzbarsky, Gabriel; Feng, Lihua; Krugman, Tamar; Fahima, Tzion

    2016-08-01

    The genetic bottlenecks associated with plant domestication and subsequent selection in man-made agroecosystems have limited the genetic diversity of modern crops and increased their vulnerability to environmental stresses. Wild emmer wheat, the tetraploid progenitor of domesticated wheat, distributed along a wide range of ecogeographical conditions in the Fertile Crescent, has valuable "left behind" adaptive diversity to multiple diseases and environmental stresses. The biotic and abiotic stress responses are conferred by series of genes and quantitative trait loci (QTLs) that control complex resistance pathways. The study of genetic diversity, genomic organization, expression profiles, protein structure and function of biotic and abiotic stress-resistance genes, and QTLs could shed light on the evolutionary history and adaptation mechanisms of wild emmer populations for their natural habitats. The continuous evolution and adaptation of wild emmer to the changing environment provide novel solutions that can contribute to safeguarding food for the rapidly growing human population.

  18. Phylogeny and rates of molecular evolution of planktonic foraminifera: SSU rDNA sequences compared to the fossil record.

    PubMed

    de Vargas, C; Zaninetti, L; Hilbrecht, H; Pawlowski, J

    1997-09-01

    Planktonic foraminifera are marine protists, whose calcareous shells form oceanic sediments and are widely used for stratigraphic and paleoenvironmental analyses. The fossil record of planktonic foraminifera is compared here to their molecular phylogeny inferred from ribosomal DNA sequences. Eighteen partial SSU rDNA sequences from species representing all modern planktonic families (Globigerinidae, Hastigerinidae, Globorotaliidae, Candeinidae) were obtained and compared to seven sequences representing the major groups of benthic foraminifera. The phylogenetic analyses indicate a polyphyletic origin for the planktonic foraminifera. The Candeinidae, the Globorotaliidae, and the clade Globigerinidae + Hastigerinidae seem to have originated independently, at different epochs in the evolution of foraminifera. Inference of their relationships, however, is limited by substitution rates of heterogeneity. Rates of SSU rDNA evolution vary from 4.0 x 10(-9) substitutions/site/year in the Globigerinidae to less than 1.0 x 10(-9) substitutions/site/year in the Globorotaliidae. These variations may be related to different levels of adaptation to the planktonic mode of life. A clock-like evolution is observed among the Globigerinidae, for which molecular and paleontological data are congruent. Phylogeny of the Globorotaliidae is clearly biased by rapid rates of substitution in two species (G. truncatulinoides and G. menardii). Our study reveals differences in absolute rates of evolution at all taxonomic levels in planktonic foraminifera and demonstrates their effect on phylogenetic reconstructions.

  19. Molecular evolution of a Y chromosome to autosome gene duplication in Drosophila.

    PubMed

    Dyer, Kelly A; White, Brooke E; Bray, Michael J; Piqué, Daniel G; Betancourt, Andrea J

    2011-03-01

    In contrast to the rest of the genome, the Y chromosome is restricted to males and lacks recombination. As a result, Y chromosomes are unable to respond efficiently to selection, and newly formed Y chromosomes degenerate until few genes remain. The rapid loss of genes from newly formed Y chromosomes has been well studied, but gene loss from highly degenerate Y chromosomes has only recently received attention. Here, we identify and characterize a Y to autosome duplication of the male fertility gene kl-5 that occurred during the evolution of the testacea group species of Drosophila. The duplication was likely DNA based, as other Y-linked genes remain on the Y chromosome, the locations of introns are conserved, and expression analyses suggest that regulatory elements remain linked. Genetic mapping reveals that the autosomal copy of kl-5 resides on the dot chromosome, a tiny autosome with strongly suppressed recombination. Molecular evolutionary analyses show that autosomal copies of kl-5 have reduced polymorphism and little recombination. Importantly, the rate of protein evolution of kl-5 has increased significantly in lineages where it is on the dot versus Y linked. Further analyses suggest this pattern is a consequence of relaxed purifying selection, rather than adaptive evolution. Thus, although the initial fixation of the kl-5 duplication may have been advantageous, slightly deleterious mutations have accumulated in the dot-linked copies of kl-5 faster than in the Y-linked copies. Because the dot chromosome contains seven times more genes than the Y and is exposed to selection in both males and females, these results suggest that the dot suffers the deleterious effects of genetic linkage to more selective targets compared with the Y chromosome. Thus, a highly degenerate Y chromosome may not be the worst environment in the genome, as is generally thought, but may in fact be protected from the accumulation of deleterious mutations relative to other nonrecombining

  20. Choosing the right molecular genetic markers for studying biodiversity: from molecular evolution to practical aspects.

    PubMed

    Chenuil, Anne; Anne, Chenuil

    2006-05-01

    The use of molecular genetic markers (MGMs) has become widespread among evolutionary biologists, and the methods of analysis of genetic data improve rapidly, yet an organized framework in which scientists can work is lacking. Elements of molecular evolution are summarized to explain the origin of variation at the DNA level, its measures, and the relationships linking genetic variability to the biological parameters of the studied organisms. MGM are defined by two components: the DNA region(s) screened, and the technique used to reveal its variation. Criteria of choice belong to three categories: (1) the level of variability, (2) the nature of the information (e.g. dominance vs. codominance, ploidy, ... ) which must be determined according to the biological question and (3) some practical criteria which mainly depend on the equipment of the laboratory and experience of the scientist. A three-step procedure is proposed for drawing up MGMs suitable to answer given biological questions, and compiled data are organized to guide the choice at each step: (1) choice, determined by the biological question, of the level of variability and of the criteria of the nature of information, (2) choice of the DNA region and (3) choice of the technique.

  1. Historical Contingency in a Multigene Family Facilitates Adaptive Evolution of Toxin Resistance.

    PubMed

    McGlothlin, Joel W; Kobiela, Megan E; Feldman, Chris R; Castoe, Todd A; Geffeney, Shana L; Hanifin, Charles T; Toledo, Gabriela; Vonk, Freek J; Richardson, Michael K; Brodie, Edmund D; Pfrender, Michael E; Brodie, Edmund D

    2016-06-20

    Novel adaptations must originate and function within an already established genome [1]. As a result, the ability of a species to adapt to new environmental challenges is predicted to be highly contingent on the evolutionary history of its lineage [2-6]. Despite a growing appreciation of the importance of historical contingency in the adaptive evolution of single proteins [7-11], we know surprisingly little about its role in shaping complex adaptations that require evolutionary change in multiple genes. One such adaptation, extreme resistance to tetrodotoxin (TTX), has arisen in several species of snakes through coevolutionary arms races with toxic amphibian prey, which select for TTX-resistant voltage-gated sodium channels (Nav) [12-16]. Here, we show that the relatively recent origins of extreme toxin resistance, which involve the skeletal muscle channel Nav1.4, were facilitated by ancient evolutionary changes in two other members of the same gene family. A substitution conferring TTX resistance to Nav1.7, a channel found in small peripheral neurons, arose in lizards ∼170 million years ago (mya) and was present in the common ancestor of all snakes. A second channel found in larger myelinated neurons, Nav1.6, subsequently evolved resistance in four different snake lineages beginning ∼38 mya. Extreme TTX resistance has evolved at least five times within the past 12 million years via changes in Nav1.4, but only within lineages that previously evolved resistant Nav1.6 and Nav1.7. Our results show that adaptive protein evolution may be contingent upon enabling substitutions elsewhere in the genome, in this case, in paralogs of the same gene family. PMID:27291053

  2. Patterns of molecular evolution of RNAi genes in social and socially parasitic bumblebees.

    PubMed

    Helbing, Sophie; Lattorff, H Michael G

    2016-08-01

    The high frequency of interactions amongst closely related individuals in social insect colonies enhances pathogen transmission. Group-mediated behavior supporting immune defenses tends to decrease selection acting on immune genes. Along with low effective population sizes this might result in relaxed constraint and rapid evolution of immune system genes. Here, we show that antiviral siRNA genes show high rates of molecular evolution with argonaute 2, armitage and maelstrom evolving faster in social bumblebees compared to their socially parasitic cuckoo bumblebees that lack a worker caste. RNAi genes show frequent positive selection at the codon level additionally supported by the occurrence of parallel evolution. Their evolutionary rate is linked to their pathway specific position with genes directly interacting with viruses showing the highest rates of molecular evolution. We suggest that higher pathogen load in social insects indeed drives the molecular evolution of immune genes including antiviral siRNA, if not compensated by behavior. PMID:27117935

  3. A molecular description of the evolution of resistance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ordoukhanian, P.; Joyce, G. F.

    1999-01-01

    BACKGROUND: In vitro evolution has been used to obtain nucleic acid molecules with interesting functional properties. The evolution process usually is carried out in a stepwise manner, involving successive rounds of selection, amplification and mutation. Recently, a continuous in vitro evolution system was devised for RNAs that catalyze the ligation of oligonucleotide substrates, allowing the evolution of catalytic function to be studied in real time. RESULTS: Continuous in vitro evolution of an RNA ligase ribozyme was carried out in the presence of a DNA enzyme that was capable of cleaving, and thereby inactivating, the ribozyme. The DNA concentration was increased steadily over 33.5 hours of evolution, reaching a final concentration that would have been sufficient to inactivate the starting population in one second. The evolved population of ribozymes developed resistance to the DNA enzyme, reducing their vulnerability to cleavage by 2000-fold but retaining their own catalytic function. Based on sequencing and kinetic analysis of the ribozymes, two mechanisms are proposed for this resistance. One involves three nucleotide substitutions, together with two compensatory mutations, that alter the site at which the DNA enzyme binds the ribozyme. The other involves enhancement of the ribozyme's ability to bind its own substrate in a way that protects it from cleavage by the DNA enzyme. CONCLUSIONS: The ability to direct the evolution of an enzyme's biochemical properties in response to the behavior of another macromolecule provides insight into the evolution of resistance and may be useful in developing enzymes with novel or enhanced function.

  4. [Candidiasis: molecular basis of parasitic adaptation of opportunistic pathogenic protists].

    PubMed

    Poulain, D

    1990-01-01

    Candida albicans is a versatile organism living as a commensal of the gastro-intestinal tract and having the ability to invade host tissues and to initiate serious diseases under the appropriate environmental conditions. The molecular basis for adherence, invasion, interactions with specific and non-specific immune factors have been studied in parallel to structural characteristics of the yeast. The main parasitologic features are closely linked to phenotypic variations. In this respect, mannoproteins are strongly involved in the cell wall variations. The study of the oligomannosidic repertoire represents one of the essential steps for the understanding of host-parasite relationships.

  5. Molecular phylogeny and evolution of the coronin gene family.

    PubMed

    Morgan, Reginald O; Fernandez, M Pilar

    2008-01-01

    other actin-binding proteins such as annexins and is a potential ligand for integrins and C2 domains known to be associated with structural and signalling roles in the membrane cytoskeleton. Molecular evolution studies provide a comprehensive overview of the structural history of the coronin gene family and a systematic methodology to gain deeper insight into the function(s) of individual members.

  6. Emergence of tissue sensitivity to Hox protein levels underlies the evolution of an adaptive morphological trait.

    PubMed

    Refki, Peter Nagui; Armisén, David; Crumière, Antonin Jean Johan; Viala, Séverine; Khila, Abderrahman

    2014-08-15

    Growth control scales morphological attributes and, therefore, provides a critical contribution to the evolution of adaptive traits. Yet, the genetic mechanisms underlying growth in the context of specific ecological adaptations are poorly understood. In water striders, adaptation to locomotion on the water surface is associated with allometric and functional changes in thoracic appendages, such that T2-legs, used as propelling oars, are longer than T3-legs, used as steering rudders. The Hox gene Ubx establishes this derived morphology by elongating T2-legs but shortening T3-legs. Using gene expression assays, RNAi knockdown, and comparative transcriptomics, we demonstrate that the evolution of water surface rowing as a novel means of locomotion is associated with the evolution of a dose-dependent promoting-repressing effect of Ubx on leg growth. In the water strider Limnoporus dissortis, T3-legs express six to seven times higher levels of Ubx compared to T2-legs. Ubx RNAi shortens T2-legs and the severity of this phenotype increases with increased depletion of Ubx protein. Conversely, Ubx RNAi lengthens T3-legs but this phenotype is partially rescued when Ubx protein is further depleted. This dose-dependent effect of Ubx on leg growth is absent in non-rowing relatives that retain the ancestral relative leg length. We also show that the spatial patterns of expression of dpp, wg, hh, egfr, dll, exd, hth, and dac are unchanged in Ubx RNAi treatments. This indicates that the dose-dependent opposite effect of Ubx on T2- and T3-legs operates without any apparent effect on the spatial expression of major leg patterning genes. Our data suggest that scaling of adaptive allometries can evolve through changes in the levels of expression of Hox proteins early during ontogeny, and in the sensitivity of the tissues that express them, without any major effects on pattern formation.

  7. Emergence of tissue sensitivity to Hox protein levels underlies the evolution of an adaptive morphological trait

    PubMed Central

    Refki, Peter Nagui; Armisén, David; Crumière, Antonin Jean Johan; Viala, Séverine; Khila, Abderrahman

    2014-01-01

    Growth control scales morphological attributes and, therefore, provides a critical contribution to the evolution of adaptive traits. Yet, the genetic mechanisms underlying growth in the context of specific ecological adaptations are poorly understood. In water striders, adaptation to locomotion on the water surface is associated with allometric and functional changes in thoracic appendages, such that T2-legs, used as propelling oars, are longer than T3-legs, used as steering rudders. The Hox gene Ubx establishes this derived morphology by elongating T2-legs but shortening T3-legs. Using gene expression assays, RNAi knockdown, and comparative transcriptomics, we demonstrate that the evolution of water surface rowing as a novel means of locomotion is associated with the evolution of a dose-dependent promoting-repressing effect of Ubx on leg growth. In the water strider Limnoporus dissortis, T3-legs express six to seven times higher levels of Ubx compared to T2-legs. Ubx RNAi shortens T2-legs and the severity of this phenotype increases with increased depletion of Ubx protein. Conversely, Ubx RNAi lengthens T3-legs but this phenotype is partially rescued when Ubx protein is further depleted. This dose-dependent effect of Ubx on leg growth is absent in non-rowing relatives that retain the ancestral relative leg length. We also show that the spatial patterns of expression of dpp, wg, hh, egfr, dll, exd, hth, and dac are unchanged in Ubx RNAi treatments. This indicates that the dose-dependent opposite effect of Ubx on T2- and T3-legs operates without any apparent effect on the spatial expression of major leg patterning genes. Our data suggest that scaling of adaptive allometries can evolve through changes in the levels of expression of Hox proteins early during ontogeny, and in the sensitivity of the tissues that express them, without any major effects on pattern formation. PMID:24886828

  8. Adaptive evolution of multiple traits through multiple mutations at a single gene.

    PubMed

    Linnen, Catherine R; Poh, Yu-Ping; Peterson, Brant K; Barrett, Rowan D H; Larson, Joanna G; Jensen, Jeffrey D; Hoekstra, Hopi E

    2013-03-15

    The identification of precise mutations is required for a complete understanding of the underlying molecular and evolutionary mechanisms driving adaptive phenotypic change. Using plasticine models in the field, we show that the light coat color of deer mice that recently colonized the light-colored soil of the Nebraska Sand Hills provides a strong selective advantage against visually hunting predators. Color variation in an admixed population suggests that this light Sand Hills phenotype is composed of multiple traits. We identified distinct regions within the Agouti locus associated with each color trait and found that only haplotypes associated with light trait values have evidence of selection. Thus, local adaptation is the result of independent selection on many mutations within a single locus, each with a specific effect on an adaptive phenotype, thereby minimizing pleiotropic consequences. PMID:23493712

  9. Adaptive Evolution of Multiple Traits Through Multiple Mutations at a Single Gene

    PubMed Central

    Linnen, Catherine R.; Poh, Yu-Ping; Peterson, Brant K.; Barrett, Rowan D. H.; Larson, Joanna G.; Jensen, Jeffrey D.; Hoekstra, Hopi E.

    2013-01-01

    The identification of precise mutations is required for a complete understanding of the underlying molecular and evolutionary mechanisms driving adaptive phenotypic change. Using plasticine models in the field, we show that the light coat color of deer mice that recently colonized the light-colored soil of the Nebraska Sand Hills provides a strong selective advantage against visually hunting predators. Color variation in an admixed population suggests that this light Sand Hills phenotype is composed of multiple traits. We identified distinct regions within the Agouti locus associated with each color trait and found that only haplotypes associated with light trait values have evidence of selection. Thus, local adaptation is the result of independent selection on many mutations within a single locus, each with a specific effect on an adaptive phenotype, thereby minimizing pleiotropic consequences. PMID:23493712

  10. Niche evolution and adaptive radiation: Testing the order of trait divergence

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Ackerly, D.D.; Schwilk, D.W.; Webb, C.O.

    2006-01-01

    In the course of an adaptive radiation, the evolution of niche parameters is of particular interest for understanding modes of speciation and the consequences for coexistence of related species within communities. We pose a general question: In the course of an evolutionary radiation, do traits related to within-community niche differences (?? niche) evolve before or after differentiation of macrohabitat affinity or climatic tolerances (?? niche)? Here we introduce a new test to address this question, based on a modification of the method of independent contrasts. The divergence order test (DOT) is based on the average age of the nodes on a tree, weighted by the absolute magnitude of the contrast at each node for a particular trait. The comparison of these weighted averages reveals whether large divergences for one trait have occurred earlier or later in the course of diversification, relative to a second trait; significance is determined by bootstrapping from maximum-likelihood ancestral state reconstructions. The method is applied to the evolution of Ceanothus, a woody plant group in California, in which co-occurring species exhibit significant differences in a key leaf trait (specific leaf area) associated with contrasting physiological and life history strategies. Co-occurring species differ more for this trait than expected under a null model of community assembly. This ?? niche difference evolved early in the divergence of two major subclades within Ceanothus, whereas climatic distributions (?? niche traits) diversified later within each of the subclades. However, rapid evolution of climate parameters makes inferences of early divergence events highly uncertain, and differentiation of the ?? niche might have taken place throughout the evolution of the group, without leaving a clear phylogenetic signal. Similar patterns observed in several plant and animal groups suggest that early divergence of ?? niche traits might be a common feature of niche evolution in

  11. Coupling of diversification and pH adaptation during the evolution of terrestrial Thaumarchaeota

    PubMed Central

    Gubry-Rangin, Cécile; Kratsch, Christina; Williams, Tom A.; McHardy, Alice C.; Embley, T. Martin; Prosser, James I.; Macqueen, Daniel J.

    2015-01-01

    The Thaumarchaeota is an abundant and ubiquitous phylum of archaea that plays a major role in the global nitrogen cycle. Previous analyses of the ammonia monooxygenase gene amoA suggest that pH is an important driver of niche specialization in these organisms. Although the ecological distribution and ecophysiology of extant Thaumarchaeota have been studied extensively, the evolutionary rise of these prokaryotes to ecological dominance in many habitats remains poorly understood. To characterize processes leading to their diversification, we investigated coevolutionary relationships between amoA, a conserved marker gene for Thaumarchaeota, and soil characteristics, by using deep sequencing and comprehensive environmental data in Bayesian comparative phylogenetics. These analyses reveal a large and rapid increase in diversification rates during early thaumarchaeotal evolution; this finding was verified by independent analyses of 16S rRNA. Our findings suggest that the entire Thaumarchaeota diversification regime was strikingly coupled to pH adaptation but less clearly correlated with several other tested environmental factors. Interestingly, the early radiation event coincided with a period of pH adaptation that enabled the terrestrial Thaumarchaeota ancestor to initially move from neutral to more acidic and alkaline conditions. In contrast to classic evolutionary models, whereby niches become rapidly filled after adaptive radiation, global diversification rates have remained stably high in Thaumarchaeota during the past 400–700 million years, suggesting an ongoing high rate of niche formation or switching for these microbes. Our study highlights the enduring importance of environmental adaptation during thaumarchaeotal evolution and, to our knowledge, is the first to link evolutionary diversification to environmental adaptation in a prokaryotic phylum. PMID:26170282

  12. Evolution of genomic structural variation and genomic architecture in the adaptive radiations of African cichlid fishes.

    PubMed

    Fan, Shaohua; Meyer, Axel

    2014-01-01

    African cichlid fishes are an ideal system for studying explosive rates of speciation and the origin of diversity in adaptive radiation. Within the last few million years, more than 2000 species have evolved in the Great Lakes of East Africa, the largest adaptive radiation in vertebrates. These young species show spectacular diversity in their coloration, morphology and behavior. However, little is known about the genomic basis of this astonishing diversity. Recently, five African cichlid genomes were sequenced, including that of the Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus), a basal and only relatively moderately diversified lineage, and the genomes of four representative endemic species of the adaptive radiations, Neolamprologus brichardi, Astatotilapia burtoni, Metriaclima zebra, and Pundamila nyererei. Using the Tilapia genome as a reference genome, we generated a high-resolution genomic variation map, consisting of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs), short insertions and deletions (indels), inversions and deletions. In total, around 18.8, 17.7, 17.0, and 17.0 million SNPs, 2.3, 2.2, 1.4, and 1.9 million indels, 262, 306, 162, and 154 inversions, and 3509, 2705, 2710, and 2634 deletions were inferred to have evolved in N. brichardi, A. burtoni, P. nyererei, and M. zebra, respectively. Many of these variations affected the annotated gene regions in the genome. Different patterns of genetic variation were detected during the adaptive radiation of African cichlid fishes. For SNPs, the highest rate of evolution was detected in the common ancestor of N. brichardi, A. burtoni, P. nyererei, and M. zebra. However, for the evolution of inversions and deletions, we found that the rates at the terminal taxa are substantially higher than the rates at the ancestral lineages. The high-resolution map provides an ideal opportunity to understand the genomic bases of the adaptive radiation of African cichlid fishes.

  13. Coupling of diversification and pH adaptation during the evolution of terrestrial Thaumarchaeota.

    PubMed

    Gubry-Rangin, Cécile; Kratsch, Christina; Williams, Tom A; McHardy, Alice C; Embley, T Martin; Prosser, James I; Macqueen, Daniel J

    2015-07-28

    The Thaumarchaeota is an abundant and ubiquitous phylum of archaea that plays a major role in the global nitrogen cycle. Previous analyses of the ammonia monooxygenase gene amoA suggest that pH is an important driver of niche specialization in these organisms. Although the ecological distribution and ecophysiology of extant Thaumarchaeota have been studied extensively, the evolutionary rise of these prokaryotes to ecological dominance in many habitats remains poorly understood. To characterize processes leading to their diversification, we investigated coevolutionary relationships between amoA, a conserved marker gene for Thaumarchaeota, and soil characteristics, by using deep sequencing and comprehensive environmental data in Bayesian comparative phylogenetics. These analyses reveal a large and rapid increase in diversification rates during early thaumarchaeotal evolution; this finding was verified by independent analyses of 16S rRNA. Our findings suggest that the entire Thaumarchaeota diversification regime was strikingly coupled to pH adaptation but less clearly correlated with several other tested environmental factors. Interestingly, the early radiation event coincided with a period of pH adaptation that enabled the terrestrial Thaumarchaeota ancestor to initially move from neutral to more acidic and alkaline conditions. In contrast to classic evolutionary models, whereby niches become rapidly filled after adaptive radiation, global diversification rates have remained stably high in Thaumarchaeota during the past 400-700 million years, suggesting an ongoing high rate of niche formation or switching for these microbes. Our study highlights the enduring importance of environmental adaptation during thaumarchaeotal evolution and, to our knowledge, is the first to link evolutionary diversification to environmental adaptation in a prokaryotic phylum.

  14. Rapid evolution of an adaptive cyanogenesis cline in introduced North American white clover (Trifolium repens L.).

    PubMed

    Kooyers, Nicholas J; Olsen, Kenneth M

    2012-05-01

    White clover is polymorphic for cyanogenesis (HCN production after tissue damage), and this herbivore defence polymorphism has served as a classic model for studying adaptive variation. The cyanogenic phenotype requires two interacting biochemical components; the presence/absence of each component is controlled by a simple Mendelian gene (Ac/ac and Li/li). Climate-associated cyanogenesis clines occur in both native (Eurasian) and introduced populations worldwide, with cyanogenic plants predominating in warmer locations. Moreover, previous studies have suggested that epistatic selection may act within populations to maintain cyanogenic (AcLi) plants and acyanogenic plants that lack both components (acli plants) at the expense of plants possessing a single component (Acli and acLi plants). Here, we examine the roles of selection, gene flow and demography in the evolution of a latitudinal cyanogenesis cline in introduced North American populations. Using 1145 plants sampled across a 1650 km transect, we determine the distribution of cyanogenesis variation across the central United States and investigate whether clinal variation is adaptive or an artefact of population introduction history. We also test for the evidence of epistatic selection. We detect a clear latitudinal cline, with cyanogenesis frequencies increasing from 11% to 86% across the transect. Population structure analysis using nine microsatellite loci indicates that the cline is adaptive and not a by-product of demographic history. However, we find no evidence for epistatic selection within populations. Our results provide strong evidence for rapid adaptive evolution in these introduced populations, and they further suggest that the mechanisms maintaining adaptive variation may vary among populations of a species.

  15. Emergence of host-adapted Salmonella Enteritidis through rapid evolution in an immunocompromised host.

    PubMed

    Klemm, Elizabeth J; Gkrania-Klotsas, Effrossyni; Hadfield, James; Forbester, Jessica L; Harris, Simon R; Hale, Christine; Heath, Jennifer N; Wileman, Thomas; Clare, Simon; Kane, Leanne; Goulding, David; Otto, Thomas D; Kay, Sally; Doffinger, Rainer; Cooke, Fiona J; Carmichael, Andrew; Lever, Andrew M L; Parkhill, Julian; MacLennan, Calman A; Kumararatne, Dinakantha; Dougan, Gordon; Kingsley, Robert A

    2016-01-01

    Host adaptation is a key factor contributing to the emergence of new bacterial, viral and parasitic pathogens. Many pathogens are considered promiscuous because they cause disease across a range of host species, while others are host-adapted, infecting particular hosts(1). Host adaptation can potentially progress to host restriction, where the pathogen is strictly limited to a single host species and is frequently associated with more severe symptoms. Host-adapted and host-restricted bacterial clades evolve from within a broader host-promiscuous species and sometimes target different niches within their specialist hosts, such as adapting from a mucosal to a systemic lifestyle. Genome degradation, marked by gene inactivation and deletion, is a key feature of host adaptation, although the triggers initiating genome degradation are not well understood. Here, we show that a chronic systemic non-typhoidal Salmonella infection in an immunocompromised human patient resulted in genome degradation targeting genes that are expendable for a systemic lifestyle. We present a genome-based investigation of a recurrent blood-borne Salmonella enterica serotype Enteritidis (S. Enteritidis) infection covering 15 years in an interleukin-12 β1 receptor-deficient individual that developed into an asymptomatic chronic infection. The infecting S. Enteritidis harboured a mutation in the mismatch repair gene mutS that accelerated the genomic mutation rate. Phylogenetic analysis and phenotyping of multiple patient isolates provides evidence for a remarkable level of within-host evolution that parallels genome changes present in successful host-restricted bacterial pathogens but never before observed on this timescale. Our analysis identifies common pathways of host adaptation and demonstrates the role that immunocompromised individuals can play in this process. PMID:27572160

  16. Emergence of host-adapted Salmonella Enteritidis through rapid evolution in an immunocompromised host

    PubMed Central

    Klemm, Elizabeth J; Gkrania-Klotsas, Effrossyni; Hadfield, James; Forbester, Jessica L; Harris, Simon R; Hale, Christine; Heath, Jennifer N; Wileman, Thomas; Clare, Simon; Kane, Leanne; Goulding, David; Otto, Thomas D; Kay, Sally; Doffinger, Rainer; Cooke, Fiona J; Carmichael, Andrew; Lever, Andrew ML; Parkhill, Julian; MacLennan, Calman A; Kumararatne, Dinakantha

    2016-01-01

    Summary Host adaptation is a key factor contributing to the emergence of new bacterial, viral and parasitic pathogens. Many pathogens are considered promiscuous because they cause disease across a range of host species, while others are host-adapted, infecting particular hosts1. Host adaptation can potentially progress to host restriction where the pathogen is strictly limited to a single host species and is frequently associated with more severe symptoms. Host-adapted and host-restricted bacterial clades evolve from within a broader host-promiscuous species and sometimes target different niches within their specialist hosts, such as adapting from a mucosal to a systemic lifestyle. Genome degradation, marked by gene inactivation and deletion, is a key feature of host adaptation, although the triggers initiating genome degradation are not well understood. Here, we show that a chronic systemic non-typhoidal Salmonella infection in an immunocompromised human patient resulted in genome degradation targeting genes that are expendable for a systemic lifestyle. We present a genome-based investigation of a recurrent blood-borne Salmonella enterica serotype Enteritidis (S. Enteritidis) infection covering 15 years in an interleukin (IL)-12 β-1 receptor-deficient individual that developed into an asymptomatic chronic infection. The infecting S. Enteritidis harbored a mutation in the mismatch repair gene mutS that accelerated the genomic mutation rate. Phylogenetic analysis and phenotyping of multiple patient isolates provides evidence for a remarkable level of within-host evolution that parallels genome changes present in successful host-restricted bacterial pathogens but never before observed on this timescale. Our analysis identifies common pathways of host adaptation and demonstrates the role that immunocompromised individuals can play in this process. PMID:27127642

  17. Identifying innovation in laboratory studies of cultural evolution: rates of retention and measures of adaptation.

    PubMed

    Caldwell, Christine A; Cornish, Hannah; Kandler, Anne

    2016-03-19

    In recent years, laboratory studies of cultural evolution have become increasingly prevalent as a means of identifying and understanding the effects of cultural transmission on the form and functionality of transmitted material. The datasets generated by these studies may provide insights into the conditions encouraging, or inhibiting, high rates of innovation, as well as the effect that this has on measures of adaptive cultural change. Here we review recent experimental studies of cultural evolution with a view to elucidating the role of innovation in generating observed trends. We first consider how tasks are presented to participants, and how the corresponding conceptualization of task success is likely to influence the degree of intent underlying any deviations from perfect reproduction. We then consider the measures of interest used by the researchers to track the changes that occur as a result of transmission, and how these are likely to be affected by differing rates of retention. We conclude that considering studies of cultural evolution from the perspective of innovation provides us with valuable insights that help to clarify important differences in research designs, which have implications for the likely effects of variation in retention rates on measures of cultural adaptation.

  18. Evolution of nutrient acquisition: when adaptation fills the gap between contrasting ecological theories

    PubMed Central

    Boudsocq, S.; Barot, S.; Loeuille, N.

    2011-01-01

    Although plant strategies for acquiring nutrients have been widely studied from a functional point of view, their evolution is still not well understood. In this study, we investigate the evolutionary dynamics of these strategies and determine how they influence ecosystem properties. To do so, we use a simple nutrient-limited ecosystem model in which plant ability to take up nutrients is subject to adaptive dynamics. We postulate the existence of a trade-off between this ability and mortality. We show that contrasting strategies are possible as evolutionary outcomes, depending on the shape of the trade-off and, when nitrogen is considered as the limiting nutrient, on the intensity of symbiotic fixation. Our model enables us to bridge these evolutionary outcomes to classical ecological theories such as Hardin's tragedy of the commons and Tilman's rule of R*. Evolution does not systematically maximize plant biomass or primary productivity. On the other hand, each evolutionary outcome leads to a decrease in the availability of the limiting mineral nutrient, supporting the work of Tilman on competition between plants for a single resource. Our model shows that evolution can be used to link different classical ecological results and that adaptation may influence ecosystem properties in contrasted ways. PMID:20798113

  19. Adaptive and nonadaptive genome size evolution in Karst endemic flora of China.

    PubMed

    Kang, Ming; Tao, Junjie; Wang, Jing; Ren, Chen; Qi, Qingwen; Xiang, Qiu-Yun; Huang, Hongwen

    2014-06-01

    Genome size variation is of fundamental biological importance and has been a longstanding puzzle in evolutionary biology. Several hypotheses for genome size evolution including neutral, maladaptive, and adaptive models have been proposed, but the relative importance of these models remains controversial. Primulina is a genus that is highly diversified in the Karst region of southern China, where genome size variation and the underlying evolutionary mechanisms are poorly understood. We reconstructed the phylogeny of Primulina using DNA sequences for 104 species and determined the genome sizes of 101 species. We examined the phylogenetic signal in genome size variation, and tested the fit to different evolutionary models and for correlations with variation in latitude and specific leaf area (SLA). The results showed that genome size, SLA and latitudinal variation all displayed strong phylogenetic signals, but were best explained by different evolutionary models. Furthermore, significant positive relationships were detected between genome size and SLA and between genome size and latitude. Our study is the first to investigate genome size evolution on such a comprehensive scale and in the Karst region flora. We conclude that genome size in Primulina is phylogenetically conserved but its variation among species is a combined outcome of both neutral and adaptive evolution.

  20. Evolution of nutrient acquisition: when adaptation fills the gap between contrasting ecological theories.

    PubMed

    Boudsocq, S; Barot, S; Loeuille, N

    2011-02-01

    Although plant strategies for acquiring nutrients have been widely studied from a functional point of view, their evolution is still not well understood. In this study, we investigate the evolutionary dynamics of these strategies and determine how they influence ecosystem properties. To do so, we use a simple nutrient-limited ecosystem model in which plant ability to take up nutrients is subject to adaptive dynamics. We postulate the existence of a trade-off between this ability and mortality. We show that contrasting strategies are possible as evolutionary outcomes, depending on the shape of the trade-off and, when nitrogen is considered as the limiting nutrient, on the intensity of symbiotic fixation. Our model enables us to bridge these evolutionary outcomes to classical ecological theories such as Hardin's tragedy of the commons and Tilman's rule of R*. Evolution does not systematically maximize plant biomass or primary productivity. On the other hand, each evolutionary outcome leads to a decrease in the availability of the limiting mineral nutrient, supporting the work of Tilman on competition between plants for a single resource. Our model shows that evolution can be used to link different classical ecological results and that adaptation may influence ecosystem properties in contrasted ways. PMID:20798113

  1. Adaptive evolution of Saccharomyces cerevisiae with enhanced ethanol tolerance for Chinese rice wine fermentation.

    PubMed

    Chen, Shuang; Xu, Yan

    2014-08-01

    High tolerance towards ethanol is a desirable property for the Saccharomyces cerevisiae strains used in the alcoholic beverage industry. To improve the ethanol tolerance of an industrial Chinese rice wine yeast, a sequential batch fermentation strategy was used to adaptively evolve a chemically mutagenized Chinese rice wine G85 strain. The high level of ethanol produced under Chinese rice wine-like fermentation conditions was used as the selective pressure. After adaptive evolution of approximately 200 generations, mutant G85X-8 was isolated and shown to have markedly increased ethanol tolerance. The evolved strain also showed higher osmotic and temperature tolerances than the parental strain. Laboratory Chinese rice wine fermentation showed that the evolved G85X-8 strain was able to catabolize sugars more completely than the parental G85 strain. A higher level of yeast cell activity was found in the fermentation mash produced by the evolved strain, but the aroma profiles were similar between the evolved and parental strains. The improved ethanol tolerance in the evolved strain might be ascribed to the altered fatty acids composition of the cell membrane and higher intracellular trehalose concentrations. These results suggest that adaptive evolution is an efficient approach for the non-recombinant modification of industrial yeast strains.

  2. The evolution of annelids reveals two adaptive routes to the interstitial realm.

    PubMed

    Struck, Torsten Hugo; Golombek, Anja; Weigert, Anne; Franke, Franziska Anni; Westheide, Wilfried; Purschke, Günter; Bleidorn, Christoph; Halanych, Kenneth Michael

    2015-08-01

    Many animals permanently inhabit the marine interstitium, the space between sand grains [1, 2]. Different evolutionary scenarios may explain the existence of interstitial animals [3, 4]. These scenarios include (1) that the interstitial realm is the ancestral habitat of bilaterians [5, 6], (2) that interstitial taxa evolved from larger ancestors by miniaturization, or (3) progenesis [3]. The first view mirrors the former hypothesis that interstitial annelids, called archiannelids, were at the base of the annelid radiation [7]. Based on morphological data, however, progenesis is generally favored for interstitial annelids today [3, 4, 8]. Herein, our phylogenomic approach revealed that interstitial archiannelids are robustly placed into two groups nested within the annelid tree. Evolution of the first group comprising among others Dinophilidae is best explained by progenesis. In contrast, the second group comprising Protodrilida and Polygordiidae appears to have evolved by stepwise miniaturization adapting from coarser to finer sediments. Thus, in addition to progenesis [3, 4], miniaturization, thought to be too slow for an adaptation to the interstitium [3], is an important second route allowing adaptation to interstitial environments. Both progenesis and miniaturization should be considered when investigating evolution of interstitial taxa [1, 3].

  3. Evolution dynamics of a model for gene duplication under adaptive conflict

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ancliff, Mark; Park, Jeong-Man

    2014-06-01

    We present and solve the dynamics of a model for gene duplication showing escape from adaptive conflict. We use a Crow-Kimura quasispecies model of evolution where the fitness landscape is a function of Hamming distances from two reference sequences, which are assumed to optimize two different gene functions, to describe the dynamics of a mixed population of individuals with single and double copies of a pleiotropic gene. The evolution equations are solved through a spin coherent state path integral, and we find two phases: one is an escape from an adaptive conflict phase, where each copy of a duplicated gene evolves toward subfunctionalization, and the other is a duplication loss of function phase, where one copy maintains its pleiotropic form and the other copy undergoes neutral mutation. The phase is determined by a competition between the fitness benefits of subfunctionalization and the greater mutational load associated with maintaining two gene copies. In the escape phase, we find a dynamics of an initial population of single gene sequences only which escape adaptive conflict through gene duplication and find that there are two time regimes: until a time t* single gene sequences dominate, and after t* double gene sequences outgrow single gene sequences. The time t* is identified as the time necessary for subfunctionalization to evolve and spread throughout the double gene sequences, and we show that there is an optimum mutation rate which minimizes this time scale.

  4. Accelerating Markov chain Monte Carlo simulation by differential evolution with self-adaptive randomized subspace sampling

    SciTech Connect

    Vrugt, Jasper A; Hyman, James M; Robinson, Bruce A; Higdon, Dave; Ter Braak, Cajo J F; Diks, Cees G H

    2008-01-01

    Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) methods have found widespread use in many fields of study to estimate the average properties of complex systems, and for posterior inference in a Bayesian framework. Existing theory and experiments prove convergence of well constructed MCMC schemes to the appropriate limiting distribution under a variety of different conditions. In practice, however this convergence is often observed to be disturbingly slow. This is frequently caused by an inappropriate selection of the proposal distribution used to generate trial moves in the Markov Chain. Here we show that significant improvements to the efficiency of MCMC simulation can be made by using a self-adaptive Differential Evolution learning strategy within a population-based evolutionary framework. This scheme, entitled DiffeRential Evolution Adaptive Metropolis or DREAM, runs multiple different chains simultaneously for global exploration, and automatically tunes the scale and orientation of the proposal distribution in randomized subspaces during the search. Ergodicity of the algorithm is proved, and various examples involving nonlinearity, high-dimensionality, and multimodality show that DREAM is generally superior to other adaptive MCMC sampling approaches. The DREAM scheme significantly enhances the applicability of MCMC simulation to complex, multi-modal search problems.

  5. A resurrection study reveals rapid adaptive evolution within populations of an invasive plant.

    PubMed

    Sultan, Sonia E; Horgan-Kobelski, Tim; Nichols, Lauren M; Riggs, Charlotte E; Waples, Ryan K

    2013-02-01

    The future spread and impact of an introduced species will depend on how it adapts to the abiotic and biotic conditions encountered in its new range, so the potential for rapid evolution subsequent to species introduction is a critical, evolutionary dimension of invasion biology. Using a resurrection approach, we provide a direct test for change over time within populations in a species' introduced range, in the Asian shade annual Polygonum cespitosum. We document, over an 11-year period, the evolution of increased reproductive output as well as greater physiological and root-allocational plasticity in response to the more open, sunny conditions found in the North American range in which the species has become invasive. These findings show that extremely rapid adaptive modifications to ecologically-important traits and plastic expression patterns can evolve subsequent to a species' introduction, within populations established in its introduced range. This study is one of the first to directly document evolutionary change in adaptive plasticity. Such rapid evolutionary changes can facilitate the spread of introduced species into novel habitats and hence contribute to their invasive success in a new range. The data also reveal how evolutionary trajectories can differ among populations in ways that can influence invasion dynamics.

  6. The Eyes Have It: A Problem-Based Learning Exercise in Molecular Evolution

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    White, Harold B.

    2007-01-01

    Molecular evolution provides an interesting context in which to use problem-based learning because it integrates a variety of topics in biology, biochemistry, and molecular biology. This three-stage problem for advanced students deals with the structure, multiple functions, and properties of lactate dehydrogenase isozymes, and the related…

  7. Non-molecular-clock-like evolution following viral origins in homo sapiens.

    PubMed

    Mok, Wendy; Seto, Kelly; Stone, Jon

    2007-09-26

    Researchers routinely adopt molecular clock assumptions in conducting sequence analyses to estimate dates for viral origins in humans. We used computational methods to examine the extent to which this practice can result in inaccurate 'retrodiction.' Failing to account for dynamic molecular evolution can affect greatly estimating index case dates, resulting in an overestimated age for the SARS-CoV-human infection, for instance.

  8. DAMBE: software package for data analysis in molecular biology and evolution.

    PubMed

    Xia, X; Xie, Z

    2001-01-01

    DAMBE (data analysis in molecular biology and evolution) is an integrated software package for converting, manipulating, statistically and graphically describing, and analyzing molecular sequence data with a user-friendly Windows 95/98/2000/NT interface. DAMBE is free and can be downloaded from http://web.hku.hk/~xxia/software/software.htm. The current version is 4.0.36.

  9. Molecular adaptation of Chrysochus leaf beetles to toxic compounds in their food plants.

    PubMed

    Labeyrie, Estelle; Dobler, Susanne

    2004-02-01

    Herbivores that feed on toxic plants must overcome plant defenses and occasionally may even benefit from them. The current challenge is to understand how herbivores evolve the necessary physiological adaptations and which changes at the molecular level are involved. In this context we studied the leaf beetles genus Chrysochus (Coleoptera, Chrysomelidae). Two species of this genus, C. auratus and C. cobaltinus, feed on plants that contain toxic cardenolides. These beetles not only avoid poisoning by the toxin but also use it for their own defense against predators. All other Chrysochus species feed on plants that are devoid of cardenolides. The most important active principle of cardenolides is their capacity to bind to and thereby block the ubiquitous Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase responsible for maintaining cellular potentials. By analyzing the DNA sequence of the putative ouabain-binding site of the alpha-subunit of the Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase gene of Chrysochus and its close relatives feeding on plants with or without cardenolides, we here trace the evolution of cardenolide insensitivity in this group of beetles. The most interesting difference among the sequences involves the amino acid at position 122. Whereas all species that do not encounter cardenolides have an asparagine in this position, both Chrysochus species that feed on cardenolide plants have a histidine instead. This single amino acid substitution has already been shown to confer cardenolide insensitivity in the monarch butterfly. A mtDNA-based phylogeny corroborates the hypothesis that the asparagine at position 122 of the alpha-subunit of the Na(+)/K(+)-ATPase gene as observed in Drosophila and other insects is the plesiomorphic condition in this group of leaf beetles. The later host-plant switch to cardenolide-containing plants in the common ancestor of C. auratus and C. cobaltinus coincides with the exchange of the asparagine for a histidine in the ouabain binding site.

  10. Comparative genomics reveals adaptive evolution of Asian tapeworm in switching to a new intermediate host

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Shuai; Wang, Sen; Luo, Yingfeng; Xiao, Lihua; Luo, Xuenong; Gao, Shenghan; Dou, Yongxi; Zhang, Huangkai; Guo, Aijiang; Meng, Qingshu; Hou, Junling; Zhang, Bing; Zhang, Shaohua; Yang, Meng; Meng, Xuelian; Mei, Hailiang; Li, Hui; He, Zilong; Zhu, Xueliang; Tan, Xinyu; Zhu, Xing-quan; Yu, Jun; Cai, Jianping; Zhu, Guan; Hu, Songnian; Cai, Xuepeng

    2016-01-01

    Taenia saginata, Taenia solium and Taenia asiatica (beef, pork and Asian tapeworms, respectively) are parasitic flatworms of major public health and food safety importance. Among them, T. asiatica is a newly recognized species that split from T. saginata via an intermediate host switch ∼1.14 Myr ago. Here we report the 169- and 168-Mb draft genomes of T. saginata and T. asiatica. Comparative analysis reveals that high rates of gene duplications and functional diversifications might have partially driven the divergence between T. asiatica and T. saginata. We observe accelerated evolutionary rates, adaptive evolutions in homeostasis regulation, tegument maintenance and lipid uptakes, and differential/specialized gene family expansions in T. asiatica that may favour its hepatotropism in the new intermediate host. We also identify potential targets for developing diagnostic or intervention tools against human tapeworms. These data provide new insights into the evolution of Taenia parasites, particularly the recent speciation of T. asiatica. PMID:27653464

  11. Co-evolution of Hormone Metabolism and Signaling Networks Expands Plant Adaptive Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Weng, Jing-Ke; Ye, Mingli; Li, Bin; Noel, Joseph P

    2016-08-11

    Classically, hormones elicit specific cellular responses by activating dedicated receptors. Nevertheless, the biosynthesis and turnover of many of these hormone molecules also produce chemically related metabolites. These molecules may also possess hormonal activities; therefore, one or more may contribute to the adaptive plasticity of signaling outcomes in host organisms. Here, we show that a catabolite of the plant hormone abscisic acid (ABA), namely phaseic acid (PA), likely emerged in seed plants as a signaling molecule that fine-tunes plant physiology, environmental adaptation, and development. This trait was facilitated by both the emergence-selection of a PA reductase that modulates PA concentrations and by the functional diversification of the ABA receptor family to perceive and respond to PA. Our results suggest that PA serves as a hormone in seed plants through activation of a subset of ABA receptors. This study demonstrates that the co-evolution of hormone metabolism and signaling networks can expand organismal resilience.

  12. Co-evolution of Hormone Metabolism and Signaling Networks Expands Plant Adaptive Plasticity.

    PubMed

    Weng, Jing-Ke; Ye, Mingli; Li, Bin; Noel, Joseph P

    2016-08-11

    Classically, hormones elicit specific cellular responses by activating dedicated receptors. Nevertheless, the biosynthesis and turnover of many of these hormone molecules also produce chemically related metabolites. These molecules may also possess hormonal activities; therefore, one or more may contribute to the adaptive plasticity of signaling outcomes in host organisms. Here, we show that a catabolite of the plant hormone abscisic acid (ABA), namely phaseic acid (PA), likely emerged in seed plants as a signaling molecule that fine-tunes plant physiology, environmental adaptation, and development. This trait was facilitated by both the emergence-selection of a PA reductase that modulates PA concentrations and by the functional diversification of the ABA receptor family to perceive and respond to PA. Our results suggest that PA serves as a hormone in seed plants through activation of a subset of ABA receptors. This study demonstrates that the co-evolution of hormone metabolism and signaling networks can expand organismal resilience. PMID:27518563

  13. Phylogenomic analyses reveal convergent patterns of adaptive evolution in elephant and human ancestries.

    PubMed

    Goodman, Morris; Sterner, Kirstin N; Islam, Munirul; Uddin, Monica; Sherwood, Chet C; Hof, Patrick R; Hou, Zhuo-Cheng; Lipovich, Leonard; Jia, Hui; Grossman, Lawrence I; Wildman, Derek E

    2009-12-01

    Specific sets of brain-expressed genes, such as aerobic energy metabolism genes, evolved adaptively in the ancestry of humans and may have evolved adaptively in the ancestry of other large-brained mammals. The recent addition of genomes from two afrotherians (elephant and tenrec) to the expanding set of publically available sequenced mammalian genomes provided an opportunity to test this hypothesis. Elephants resemble humans by having large brains and long life spans; tenrecs, in contrast, have small brains and short life spans. Thus, we investigated whether the phylogenomic patterns of adaptive evolution are more similar between elephant and human than between either elephant and tenrec lineages or human and mouse lineages, and whether aerobic energy metabolism genes are especially well represented in the elephant and human patterns. Our analyses encompassed approximately 6,000 genes in each of these lineages with each gene yielding extensive coding sequence matches in interordinal comparisons. Each gene's nonsynonymous and synonymous nucleotide substitution rates and dN/dS ratios were determined. Then, from gene ontology information on genes with the higher dN/dS ratios, we identified the more prevalent sets of genes that belong to specific functional categories and that evolved adaptively. Elephant and human lineages showed much slower nucleotide substitution rates than tenrec and mouse lineages but more adaptively evolved genes. In correlation with absolute brain size and brain oxygen consumption being largest in elephants and next largest in humans, adaptively evolved aerobic energy metabolism genes were most evident in the elephant lineage and next most evident in the human lineage.

  14. Adaptive evolution of the venom-targeted vWF protein in opossums that eat pitvipers.

    PubMed

    Jansa, Sharon A; Voss, Robert S

    2011-01-01

    The rapid evolution of venom toxin genes is often explained as the result of a biochemical arms race between venomous animals and their prey. However, it is not clear that an arms race analogy is appropriate in this context because there is no published evidence for rapid evolution in genes that might confer toxin resistance among routinely envenomed species. Here we report such evidence from an unusual predator-prey relationship between opossums (Marsupialia: Didelphidae) and pitvipers (Serpentes: Crotalinae). In particular, we found high ratios of replacement to silent substitutions in the gene encoding von Willebrand Factor (vWF), a venom-targeted hemostatic blood protein, in a clade of opossums known to eat pitvipers and to be resistant to their hemorrhagic venom. Observed amino-acid substitutions in venom-resistant opossums include changes in net charge and hydrophobicity that are hypothesized to weaken the bond between vWF and one of its toxic snake-venom ligands, the C-type lectin-like protein botrocetin. Our results provide the first example of rapid adaptive evolution in any venom-targeted molecule, and they support the notion that an evolutionary arms race might be driving the rapid evolution of snake venoms. However, in the arms race implied by our results, venomous snakes are prey, and their venom has a correspondingly defensive function in addition to its usual trophic role.

  15. Evidence for determinism in species diversification and contingency in phenotypic evolution during adaptive radiation.

    PubMed

    Burbrink, Frank T; Chen, Xin; Myers, Edward A; Brandley, Matthew C; Pyron, R Alexander

    2012-12-01

    Adaptive radiation (AR) theory predicts that groups sharing the same source of ecological opportunity (EO) will experience deterministic species diversification and morphological evolution. Thus, deterministic ecological and morphological evolution should be correlated with deterministic patterns in the tempo and mode of speciation for groups in similar habitats and time periods. We test this hypothesis using well-sampled phylogenies of four squamate groups that colonized the New World (NW) in the Late Oligocene. We use both standard and coalescent models to assess species diversification, as well as likelihood models to examine morphological evolution. All squamate groups show similar early pulses of speciation, as well as diversity-dependent ecological limits on clade size at a continental scale. In contrast, processes of morphological evolution are not easily predictable and do not show similar pulses of early and rapid change. Patterns of morphological and species diversification thus appear uncoupled across these groups. This indicates that the processes that drive diversification and disparification are not mechanistically linked, even among similar groups of taxa experiencing the same sources of EO. It also suggests that processes of phenotypic diversification cannot be predicted solely from the existence of an AR or knowledge of the process of diversification.

  16. The eunuch phenomenon: adaptive evolution of genital emasculation in sexually dimorphic spiders.

    PubMed

    Kuntner, Matjaž; Agnarsson, Ingi; Li, Daiqin

    2015-02-01

    Under natural and sexual selection traits often evolve that secure paternity or maternity through self-sacrifice to predators, rivals, offspring, or partners. Emasculation-males removing their genitals-is an unusual example of such behaviours. Known only in insects and spiders, the phenomenon's adaptiveness is difficult to explain, yet its repeated origins and association with sexual size dimorphism (SSD) and sexual cannibalism suggest an adaptive significance. In spiders, emasculation of paired male sperm-transferring organs - secondary genitals - (hereafter, palps), results in 'eunuchs'. This behaviour has been hypothesized to be adaptive because (i) males plug female genitals with their severed palps (plugging hypothesis), (ii) males remove their palps to become better fighters in male-male contests (better-fighter hypothesis), perhaps reaching higher agility due to reduced total body mass (gloves-off hypothesis), and (iii) males achieve prolonged sperm transfer through severed genitals (remote-copulation hypothesis). Prior research has provided evidence in support of these hypotheses in some orb-weaving spiders but these explanations are far from general. Seeking broad macroevolutionary patterns of spider emasculation, we review the known occurrences, weigh the evidence in support of the hypotheses in each known case, and redefine more precisely the particular cases of emasculation depending on its timing in relation to maturation and mating: 'pre-maturation', 'mating', and 'post-mating'. We use a genus-level spider phylogeny to explore emasculation evolution and to investigate potential evolutionary linkage between emasculation, SSD, lesser genital damage (embolic breakage), and sexual cannibalism (females consuming their mates). We find a complex pattern of spider emasculation evolution, all cases confined to Araneoidea: emasculation evolved at least five and up to 11 times, was lost at least four times, and became further modified at least once. We also find

  17. The eunuch phenomenon: adaptive evolution of genital emasculation in sexually dimorphic spiders.

    PubMed

    Kuntner, Matjaž; Agnarsson, Ingi; Li, Daiqin

    2015-02-01

    Under natural and sexual selection traits often evolve that secure paternity or maternity through self-sacrifice to predators, rivals, offspring, or partners. Emasculation-males removing their genitals-is an unusual example of such behaviours. Known only in insects and spiders, the phenomenon's adaptiveness is difficult to explain, yet its repeated origins and association with sexual size dimorphism (SSD) and sexual cannibalism suggest an adaptive significance. In spiders, emasculation of paired male sperm-transferring organs - secondary genitals - (hereafter, palps), results in 'eunuchs'. This behaviour has been hypothesized to be adaptive because (i) males plug female genitals with their severed palps (plugging hypothesis), (ii) males remove their palps to become better fighters in male-male contests (better-fighter hypothesis), perhaps reaching higher agility due to reduced total body mass (gloves-off hypothesis), and (iii) males achieve prolonged sperm transfer through severed genitals (remote-copulation hypothesis). Prior research has provided evidence in support of these hypotheses in some orb-weaving spiders but these explanations are far from general. Seeking broad macroevolutionary patterns of spider emasculation, we review the known occurrences, weigh the evidence in support of the hypotheses in each known case, and redefine more precisely the particular cases of emasculation depending on its timing in relation to maturation and mating: 'pre-maturation', 'mating', and 'post-mating'. We use a genus-level spider phylogeny to explore emasculation evolution and to investigate potential evolutionary linkage between emasculation, SSD, lesser genital damage (embolic breakage), and sexual cannibalism (females consuming their mates). We find a complex pattern of spider emasculation evolution, all cases confined to Araneoidea: emasculation evolved at least five and up to 11 times, was lost at least four times, and became further modified at least once. We also find

  18. Multiobjective Image Color Quantization Algorithm Based on Self-Adaptive Hybrid Differential Evolution

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Xuewen

    2016-01-01

    In recent years, some researchers considered image color quantization as a single-objective problem and applied heuristic algorithms to solve it. This paper establishes a multiobjective image color quantization model with intracluster distance and intercluster separation as its objectives. Inspired by a multipopulation idea, a multiobjective image color quantization algorithm based on self-adaptive hybrid differential evolution (MoDE-CIQ) is then proposed to solve this model. Two numerical experiments on four common test images are conducted to analyze the effectiveness and competitiveness of the multiobjective model and the proposed algorithm. PMID:27738423

  19. Roles of adaptation, chance and history in the evolution of the dinoflagellate Prorocentrum triestinum

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flores-Moya, Antonio; Costas, Eduardo; López-Rodas, Victoria

    2008-08-01

    Evolutionary changes depend on adaptive evolution and two other components that traditionally have not been taken into account: chance and history. However, concepts in evolutionary biology are very often supported by descriptive studies but not by empirical approach. In order to disentangle the three components of evolutionary change, we have investigated the effects of long-term selection pressure on fitness and cell size in the bloom-forming dinoflagellate, Prorocentrum triestinum Schiller, under increased nutrient concentrations and temperature. Two strains of P. triestinum, previously adapted to grow under standard conditions (f/2 medium, 20°C), were grown under increased nutrient concentrations and temperature (f medium, 25°C) until fitness and cell size were invariant as a function of time (720 days, corresponding to c. 400 generations). The mean value for fitness of both strains of P. triestinum showed a significant increase whereas a decrease in mean cell size was found. The changes in fitness have adaptive value, but the changes in cell size were due to both adaptation and the contribution of chance-plus-history.

  20. Evolutionary constraints on adaptive evolution during range expansion in an invasive plant.

    PubMed

    Colautti, Robert I; Eckert, Christopher G; Barrett, Spencer C H

    2010-06-22

    Biological invasions may expose populations to strong selection for local adaptation along geographical gradients in climate. However, evolution during contemporary timescales can be constrained by low standing genetic variation and genetic correlations among life-history traits. We examined limits to local adaptation associated with northern migration of the invasive wetland plant purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria) using a selection model incorporating a trade-off between flowering time and size at reproduction, and common garden experiments of populations sampled along a latitudinal transect of approximately 1200 km in eastern North America. A strong trade-off between flowering time and size at reproduction caused early-flowering plants to be smaller with reduced seed production in northern populations. Northward spread was associated with a decline in genetic variance within populations and an increase in genetic skew for flowering time and size, with limited genetic variation for small, early-flowering genotypes. These patterns were predicted by our selection model of local adaptation to shorter growing seasons and were not consistent with expectations from non-adaptive processes. Reduced fecundity may limit population growth and rates of spread in northern populations. Identifying genetic constraints on key life-history traits can provide novel insights into invasion dynamics and the causes of range limits in introduced species. PMID:20164098

  1. Genetic Adaptation to Salt Stress in Experimental Evolution of Desulfovibrio vulgaris Hildenborough

    SciTech Connect

    Zhou, Aifen; Hillesland, Kristina; He, Zhili; Joachimiak, Marcin; Zane, Grant; Dehal, Paramvir; Arkin, Adam; Stahl, David; Wall, Judy; Hazen, Terry; Zhou, Jizhong; Baidoo, Edward; Benke, Peter; Mukhopadhyay, Aindrila

    2010-05-17

    High salinity is one of the most common environmental stressors. In order to understand how environmental organisms adapt to salty environment, an experiment evolution with sulfate reducing bacteria Desulfovibrio vugaris Hildenborough was conducted. Control lines and salt-stressed lines (6 lines each) grown in minimal medium LS4D or LS4D + 100 mM NaCl were transferred for 1200 generations. The salt tolerance was tested with LS4D supplemented with 250 mM NaCl. Statistical analysis of the growth data suggested that all lines adapted to their evolutionary environment. In addition, the control lines performed better than the ancestor with faster growth rate, higher biomass yield and shorter lag phase under salty environment they did not evolve in. However, the salt-adapted lines performed better than the control lines on measures of growth rate and yield under salty environment, suggesting that the salt?evolved lines acquired mutations specific to having extra salt in LS4D. Growth data and gene transcription data suggested that populations tended to improve till 1000 generations and active mutations tended to be fixed at the stage of 1000 generations. Point mutations and insertion/deletions were identified in isolated colonies from salt-adapted and control lines via whole genome sequencing. Glu, Gln and Ala appears to be the major osmoprotectant in evolved salt-stressed line. Ongoing studies are now characterizing the contribution of specific mutations identified in the salt-evolved D. vulgaris.

  2. Epigenetic resolution of the ‘curse of complexity’ in adaptive evolution of complex traits

    PubMed Central

    Badyaev, Alexander V

    2014-01-01

    The age of most genes exceeds the longevity of their genomic and physiological associations by many orders of magnitude. Such transient contexts modulate the expression of ancient genes to produce currently appropriate and often highly distinct developmental and functional outcomes. The efficacy of such adaptive modulation is diminished by the high dimensionality of complex organisms and associated vast areas of neutrality in their genotypic and developmental networks (and, thus, weak natural selection). Here I explore whether epigenetic effects facilitate adaptive modulation of complex phenotypes by effectively reducing the dimensionality of their deterministic networks and thus delineating their developmental and evolutionary trajectories even under weak selection. Epigenetic effects that link unconnected or widely dispersed elements of genotype space in ecologically relevant time could account for the rapid appearance of functionally integrated adaptive modifications. On an organismal time scale, conceptually similar processes occur during recurrent epigenetic reprogramming of somatic stem cells to produce, recurrently and reversibly, a bewildering array of differentiated and persistent cell lineages, all sharing identical genomic sequences despite strongly distinct phenotypes. I discuss whether close dependency of onset, scope and duration of epigenetic effects on cellular and genomic context in stem cells could provide insights into contingent modulation of conserved genomic material on a much longer evolutionary time scale. I review potential empirical examples of epigenetic bridges that reduce phenotype dimensionality and accomplish rapid adaptive modulation in the evolution of novelties, expression of behavioural types, and stress-induced ossification schedules. PMID:24882810

  3. Evolutionary constraints on adaptive evolution during range expansion in an invasive plant.

    PubMed

    Colautti, Robert I; Eckert, Christopher G; Barrett, Spencer C H

    2010-06-22

    Biological invasions may expose populations to strong selection for local adaptation along geographical gradients in climate. However, evolution during contemporary timescales can be constrained by low standing genetic variation and genetic correlations among life-history traits. We examined limits to local adaptation associated with northern migration of the invasive wetla