skip to main content


Title: Population Genomics of Daphnia pulex
Abstract Using data from 83 isolates from a single population, the population genomics of the microcrustacean Daphnia pulex are described and compared to current knowledge for the only other well-studied invertebrate, Drosophila melanogaster. These two species are quite similar with respect to effective population sizes and mutation rates, although some features of recombination appear to be different, with linkage disequilibrium being elevated at short (<100 bp) distances in D. melanogaster and at long distances in D. pulex. The study population adheres closely to the expectations under Hardy–Weinberg equilibrium, and reflects a past population history of no more than a twofold range of variation in effective population size. Fourfold redundant silent sites and a restricted region of intronic sites appear to evolve in a nearly neutral fashion, providing a powerful tool for population genetic analyses. Amino acid replacement sites are predominantly under strong purifying selection, as are a large fraction of sites in UTRs and intergenic regions, but the majority of SNPs at such sites that rise to frequencies >0.05 appear to evolve in a nearly neutral fashion. All forms of genomic sites (including replacement sites within codons, and intergenic and UTR regions) appear to be experiencing an ∼2× higher level of selection scaled to the power of drift in D. melanogaster, but this may in part be a consequence of recent demographic changes. These results establish D. pulex as an excellent system for future work on the evolutionary genomics of natural populations.  more » « less
Award ID(s):
1759906
NSF-PAR ID:
10290728
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ; ; ;
Date Published:
Journal Name:
Genetics
Volume:
206
Issue:
1
ISSN:
1943-2631
Page Range / eLocation ID:
315 to 332
Format(s):
Medium: X
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. The ways in which genetic variation is distributed within and among populations is a key determinant of the evolutionary features of a species. However, most comprehensive studies of these features have been restricted to studies of subdivision in settings known to have been driven by local adaptation, leaving our understanding of the natural dispersion of allelic variation less than ideal. Here, we present a geographic population-genomic analysis of 10 populations of the freshwater microcrustacean Daphnia pulex, an emerging model system in evolutionary genomics. These populations exhibit a pattern of moderate isolation-by-distance, with an average migration rate of 0.6 individuals per generation, and average effective population sizes of ∼650,000 individuals. Most populations contain numerous private alleles, and genomic scans highlight the presence of islands of excessively high population subdivision for more common alleles. A large fraction of such islands of population divergence likely reflect historical neutral changes, including rare stochastic migration and hybridization events. The data do point to local adaptive divergence, although the precise nature of the relevant variation is diffuse and cannot be associated with particular loci, despite the very large sample sizes involved in this study. In contrast, an analysis of between-species divergence highlights positive selection operating on a large set of genes with functions nearly nonoverlapping with those involved in local adaptation, in particular ribosome structure, mitochondrial bioenergetics, light reception and response, detoxification, and gene regulation. These results set the stage for using D. pulex as a model for understanding the relationship between molecular and cellular evolution in the context of natural environments. 
    more » « less
  2. Abstract

    The field of genomics has ushered in new methods for studying molecular-genetic variation in natural populations. However, most population-genomic studies still rely on small sample sizes (typically, <100 individuals) from single time points, leaving considerable uncertainties with respect to the behavior of relatively young (and rare) alleles and, owing to the large sampling variance of measures of variation, to the specific gene targets of unusually strong selection. Genomic sequences of ∼1,700 haplotypes distributed over a 10-year period from a natural population of the microcrustacean Daphnia pulex reveal evolutionary-genomic features at a refined scale, including previously hidden information on the behavior of rare alleles predicted by recent theory. Background selection, resulting from the recurrent introduction of deleterious alleles, appears to strongly influence the dynamics of neutral alleles, inducing indirect negative selection on rare variants and positive selection on common variants. Temporally fluctuating selection increases the persistence of nonsynonymous alleles with intermediate frequencies, while reducing standing levels of variation at linked silent sites. Combined with the results from an equally large metapopulation survey of the study species, classes of genes that are under strong positive selection can now be confidently identified in this key model organism. Most notable among rapidly evolving Daphnia genes are those associated with ribosomes, mitochondrial functions, sensory systems, and lifespan determination.

     
    more » « less
  3. Abstract

    Despite its economic importance as a bioenergy crop and key role in riparian ecosystems, little is known about genetic diversity and adaptation of the eastern cottonwood (Populus deltoides). Here, we report the first population genomics study for this species, conducted on a sample of 425 unrelated individuals collected in 13 states of the southeastern United States. The trees were genotyped by targeted resequencing of 18,153 genes and 23,835 intergenic regions, followed by the identification of single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs). This naturalP. deltoidespopulation showed low levels of subpopulation differentiation (FST = 0.022–0.106), high genetic diversity (θW = 0.00100, π = 0.00170), a large effective population size (Ne ≈ 32,900), and low to moderate levels of linkage disequilibrium. Additionally, genomewide scans for selection (Tajima'sD), subpopulation differentiation (XTX), and environmental association analyses with eleven climate variables carried out with two different methods (LFMMandBAYENV2) identified genes putatively involved in local adaptation. Interestingly, many of these genes were also identified as adaptation candidates in another poplar species,Populus trichocarpa, indicating possible convergent evolution. This study constitutes the first assessment of genetic diversity and local adaptation inP. deltoidesthroughout the southern part of its range, information we expect to be of use to guide management and breeding strategies for this species in future, especially in the face of climate change.

     
    more » « less
  4. Rogers, Rebekah (Ed.)
    Abstract

    Wolbachia are a genus of widespread bacterial endosymbionts in which some strains can hijack or manipulate arthropod host reproduction. Male killing is one such manipulation in which these maternally transmitted bacteria benefit surviving daughters in part by removing competition with the sons for scarce resources. Despite previous findings of interesting genome features of microbial sex ratio distorters, the population genomics of male-killers remain largely uncharacterized. Here, we uncover several unique features of the genome and population genomics of four Arizonan populations of a male-killing Wolbachia strain, wInn, that infects mushroom-feeding Drosophila innubila. We first compared the wInn genome with other closely related Wolbachia genomes of Drosophila hosts in terms of genome content and confirm that the wInn genome is largely similar in overall gene content to the wMel strain infecting D. melanogaster. However, it also contains many unique genes and repetitive genetic elements that indicate lateral gene transfers between wInn and non-Drosophila eukaryotes. We also find that, in line with literature precedent, genes in the Wolbachia prophage and Octomom regions are under positive selection. Of all the genes under positive selection, many also show evidence of recent horizontal transfer among Wolbachia symbiont genomes. These dynamics of selection and horizontal gene transfer across the genomes of several Wolbachia strains and diverse host species may be important underlying factors in Wolbachia’s success as a male-killer of divergent host species.

     
    more » « less
  5. null (Ed.)
    Abstract With up to millions of nearly neutral polymorphisms now being routinely sampled in population-genomic surveys, it is possible to estimate the site-frequency spectrum of such sites with high precision. Each frequency class reflects a mixture of potentially unique demographic histories, which can be revealed using theory for the probability distributions of the starting and ending points of branch segments over all possible coalescence trees. Such distributions are completely independent of past population history, which only influences the segment lengths, providing the basis for estimating average population sizes separating tree-wide coalescence events. The history of population-size change experienced by a sample of polymorphisms can then be dissected in a model-flexible fashion, and extension of this theory allows estimation of the mean and full distribution of long-term effective population sizes and ages of alleles of specific frequencies. Here, we outline the basic theory underlying the conceptual approach, develop and test an efficient statistical procedure for parameter estimation, and apply this to multiple population-genomic datasets for the microcrustacean Daphnia pulex. 
    more » « less