On the evolution of phenotypic plasticity in a spatially heterogeneous environment

Lev A. Zhivotovsky, Marcus W. Feldman, Aviv Bergman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

48 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

A genetic model for the dynamics of a quantitative trait is analyzed in terms of gene frequencies, linkage disequilibria, and environmental effects on the trait. In a randomly mating population, at each generation progeny move to niches where they are subject to weak Gaussian selection on the trait, with different fitness levels in the different niches. Initially, the variability of the trait is due to additive loci with heterozygous homeostasis. The evolution of plasticity is then described in terms of the invasion of the population by genetic modifiers that may epistatically affect the trait, its optimum in each niche, the strengths of selection, and other parameters characteristic of the niches. We show that the evolution of trait means within niches depends on the overall evolution in the whole system, and in general, optimum phenotypic values are not attained. The reaction norm and genotype-environment interaction may evolve even if the only effects of the modifier are on individual rates of dispersal, or on fitness effects resulting from the different environments in the different niches; this evolution does not require that the modifier affect parameters that influence the values of the trait. It is conjectured that in the least frequently reached niches with low fitness levels, the deviations from the trait optima should be larger than those in more commonly experienced and less stringent niches. Our analysis makes explicit the different contribution of between- and within-niche effects on the evolutionary dynamics of phenotypic plasticity in heterogeneous environments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)547-558
Number of pages12
JournalEvolution
Volume50
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1996
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

phenotypic plasticity
niche
niches
Genetic Models
Linkage Disequilibrium
Population Genetics
Gene Frequency
Homeostasis
fitness
Genotype
Population
genotype-environment interaction
reaction norm
homeostasis
linkage disequilibrium
quantitative traits
environmental effect
disequilibrium
dynamic models
gene frequency

Keywords

  • Evolutionary dynamics
  • Heterogeneous environments
  • Multiple loci
  • Reaction norm

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Genetics
  • Ecology
  • Genetics(clinical)

Cite this

On the evolution of phenotypic plasticity in a spatially heterogeneous environment. / Zhivotovsky, Lev A.; Feldman, Marcus W.; Bergman, Aviv.

In: Evolution, Vol. 50, No. 2, 04.1996, p. 547-558.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Zhivotovsky, Lev A. ; Feldman, Marcus W. ; Bergman, Aviv. / On the evolution of phenotypic plasticity in a spatially heterogeneous environment. In: Evolution. 1996 ; Vol. 50, No. 2. pp. 547-558.
@article{d041e011cf1a4fa8bca784703560f0e1,
title = "On the evolution of phenotypic plasticity in a spatially heterogeneous environment",
abstract = "A genetic model for the dynamics of a quantitative trait is analyzed in terms of gene frequencies, linkage disequilibria, and environmental effects on the trait. In a randomly mating population, at each generation progeny move to niches where they are subject to weak Gaussian selection on the trait, with different fitness levels in the different niches. Initially, the variability of the trait is due to additive loci with heterozygous homeostasis. The evolution of plasticity is then described in terms of the invasion of the population by genetic modifiers that may epistatically affect the trait, its optimum in each niche, the strengths of selection, and other parameters characteristic of the niches. We show that the evolution of trait means within niches depends on the overall evolution in the whole system, and in general, optimum phenotypic values are not attained. The reaction norm and genotype-environment interaction may evolve even if the only effects of the modifier are on individual rates of dispersal, or on fitness effects resulting from the different environments in the different niches; this evolution does not require that the modifier affect parameters that influence the values of the trait. It is conjectured that in the least frequently reached niches with low fitness levels, the deviations from the trait optima should be larger than those in more commonly experienced and less stringent niches. Our analysis makes explicit the different contribution of between- and within-niche effects on the evolutionary dynamics of phenotypic plasticity in heterogeneous environments.",
keywords = "Evolutionary dynamics, Heterogeneous environments, Multiple loci, Reaction norm",
author = "Zhivotovsky, {Lev A.} and Feldman, {Marcus W.} and Aviv Bergman",
year = "1996",
month = "4",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "50",
pages = "547--558",
journal = "Evolution; international journal of organic evolution",
issn = "0014-3820",
publisher = "Society for the Study of Evolution",
number = "2",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - On the evolution of phenotypic plasticity in a spatially heterogeneous environment

AU - Zhivotovsky, Lev A.

AU - Feldman, Marcus W.

AU - Bergman, Aviv

PY - 1996/4

Y1 - 1996/4

N2 - A genetic model for the dynamics of a quantitative trait is analyzed in terms of gene frequencies, linkage disequilibria, and environmental effects on the trait. In a randomly mating population, at each generation progeny move to niches where they are subject to weak Gaussian selection on the trait, with different fitness levels in the different niches. Initially, the variability of the trait is due to additive loci with heterozygous homeostasis. The evolution of plasticity is then described in terms of the invasion of the population by genetic modifiers that may epistatically affect the trait, its optimum in each niche, the strengths of selection, and other parameters characteristic of the niches. We show that the evolution of trait means within niches depends on the overall evolution in the whole system, and in general, optimum phenotypic values are not attained. The reaction norm and genotype-environment interaction may evolve even if the only effects of the modifier are on individual rates of dispersal, or on fitness effects resulting from the different environments in the different niches; this evolution does not require that the modifier affect parameters that influence the values of the trait. It is conjectured that in the least frequently reached niches with low fitness levels, the deviations from the trait optima should be larger than those in more commonly experienced and less stringent niches. Our analysis makes explicit the different contribution of between- and within-niche effects on the evolutionary dynamics of phenotypic plasticity in heterogeneous environments.

AB - A genetic model for the dynamics of a quantitative trait is analyzed in terms of gene frequencies, linkage disequilibria, and environmental effects on the trait. In a randomly mating population, at each generation progeny move to niches where they are subject to weak Gaussian selection on the trait, with different fitness levels in the different niches. Initially, the variability of the trait is due to additive loci with heterozygous homeostasis. The evolution of plasticity is then described in terms of the invasion of the population by genetic modifiers that may epistatically affect the trait, its optimum in each niche, the strengths of selection, and other parameters characteristic of the niches. We show that the evolution of trait means within niches depends on the overall evolution in the whole system, and in general, optimum phenotypic values are not attained. The reaction norm and genotype-environment interaction may evolve even if the only effects of the modifier are on individual rates of dispersal, or on fitness effects resulting from the different environments in the different niches; this evolution does not require that the modifier affect parameters that influence the values of the trait. It is conjectured that in the least frequently reached niches with low fitness levels, the deviations from the trait optima should be larger than those in more commonly experienced and less stringent niches. Our analysis makes explicit the different contribution of between- and within-niche effects on the evolutionary dynamics of phenotypic plasticity in heterogeneous environments.

KW - Evolutionary dynamics

KW - Heterogeneous environments

KW - Multiple loci

KW - Reaction norm

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0029752281&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0029752281&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Article

VL - 50

SP - 547

EP - 558

JO - Evolution; international journal of organic evolution

JF - Evolution; international journal of organic evolution

SN - 0014-3820

IS - 2

ER -