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Transposable element-medicated evolution of sex: A population genetic model

Joshi, NV (1990) Transposable element-medicated evolution of sex: A population genetic model. In: Journal of Genetics, 69 (3). pp. 127-139.

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For a population made up of individuals capable of sexual as well as asexual modes of reproduction, conditions for the spread of a transposable element are explored using a one-locus, two-haplotype model. The analysis is then extended to include the possibility that the transposable element can modulate the probability of sexual reproduction, thus casting Hickey’s (1982,Genetics 101: 519–531) suggestion in a population genetics framework. The model explicitly includes the cost of sexual reproduction, fitness disadvantage to the transposable element, probability of transposition, and the predisposition for sexual reproduction in the presence and absence of the transposable element. The model predicts several kinds of outcome, including initial frequency dependence and stable polymorphism. More importantly, it is seen that for a wide range of parameter values, the transposable element can go to fixation. Therefore it is able to convert the population from a predominantly asexual to a predominantly sexual mode of reproduction. Viewed in conjunction with recent results implicating short stretches of apparently non-coding DNA in sex determination (McCoubreyet al. 1988,Science 242: 1146–1151), the model hints at the important role this mechanism could have played in the evolution of sexuality.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Journal of Genetics
Publisher: Indian Academy of Sciences
Additional Information: Copyright of this article belongs to Indian Academy of Sciences.
Keywords: Selfish DNA - transposable elements - evolution of sex
Department/Centre: Division of Biological Sciences > Centre for Ecological Sciences
Date Deposited: 10 Jan 2011 11:31
Last Modified: 10 Jan 2011 11:31
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/34924

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