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Dynamics of Genetic Variability in Two-Locus Models of Stabilizing Selection

S. Gavrilets
A. Hastings
Journal / Anthology

Year: 1994
Volume: 138
Page range: 519-532

We study a two locus model, with additive contributions to the phenotype, to explore the dynamics of different phenotype characteristics under stabilizing selection and recombination. We demonstrate that the interaction of selection and recombination results in constraints on the mode of phenotypic evolution. Let Vg be the genic variance of the trait and Cl be the contribution of linkage disequilibrium to the genotype variance. We demonstrate that, independent of the initial conditions, the dynamics of the system on the plane (Vg, Cl) are typically characterized by a quick approach to a straight line with slow evolution along this line afterward. We analyze how the mode and the rate of phenotypic evolution depend on the strength of selection relative to recombination, on the form of fitness function, and the difference in allelic effect. We argue that if selection is not extremely weak relative to recombination, linkage disequilbrium generated by stabilizing selection influences the dynamics significantly. We demonstrate that under these conditions, which are plausible in nature and certainly the case in artificial stabilizing selection experiments, the model can have a polymorphic equilibrium with positive linkage disequilibrium that is stable simultaneously with monomorphic equilibria.

*Science > Biology