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High evolutionary potential of marine zooplankton

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      Abstract

      Open ocean zooplankton often have been viewed as slowly evolving species that have limited capacity to respond adaptively to changing ocean conditions. Hence, attention has focused on the ecological responses of zooplankton to current global change, including range shifts and changing phenology. Here, we argue that zooplankton also are well poised for evolutionary responses to global change. We present theoretical arguments that suggest plankton species may respond rapidly to selection on mildly beneficial mutations due to exceptionally large population size, and consider the circumstantial evidence that supports our inference that selection may be particularly important for these species. We also review all primary population genetic studies of open ocean zooplankton and show that genetic isolation can be achieved at the scale of gyre systems in open ocean habitats (100s to 1000s of km). Furthermore, population genetic structure often varies across planktonic taxa, and appears to be linked to the particular ecological requirements of the organism. In combination, these characteristics should facilitate adaptive evolution to distinct oceanographic habitats in the plankton. We conclude that marine zooplankton may be capable of rapid evolutionary as well as ecological responses to changing ocean conditions, and discuss the implications of this view. We further suggest two priority areas for future research to test our hypothesis of high evolutionary potential in open ocean zooplankton, which will require (1) assessing how pervasive selection is in driving population divergence and (2) rigorously quantifying the spatial and temporal scales of population differentiation in the open ocean.

      Recent attention has focused on the ecological responses of open ocean zooplankton to current global change, including range shifts and changing phenology. Here, we argue that marine zooplankton also are well poised for evolutionary responses to global change.

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      Inference of population structure using multilocus genotype data.

      We describe a model-based clustering method for using multilocus genotype data to infer population structure and assign individuals to populations. We assume a model in which there are K populations (where K may be unknown), each of which is characterized by a set of allele frequencies at each locus. Individuals in the sample are assigned (probabilistically) to populations, or jointly to two or more populations if their genotypes indicate that they are admixed. Our model does not assume a particular mutation process, and it can be applied to most of the commonly used genetic markers, provided that they are not closely linked. Applications of our method include demonstrating the presence of population structure, assigning individuals to populations, studying hybrid zones, and identifying migrants and admixed individuals. We show that the method can produce highly accurate assignments using modest numbers of loci-e.g. , seven microsatellite loci in an example using genotype data from an endangered bird species. The software used for this article is available from http://www.stats.ox.ac.uk/ approximately pritch/home. html.
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        Ecological and Evolutionary Responses to Recent Climate Change

        Ecological changes in the phenology and distribution of plants and animals are occurring in all well-studied marine, freshwater, and terrestrial groups. These observed changes are heavily biased in the directions predicted from global warming and have been linked to local or regional climate change through correlations between climate and biological variation, field and laboratory experiments, and physiological research. Range-restricted species, particularly polar and mountaintop species, show severe range contractions and have been the first groups in which entire species have gone extinct due to recent climate change. Tropical coral reefs and amphibians have been most negatively affected. Predator-prey and plant-insect interactions have been disrupted when interacting species have responded differently to warming. Evolutionary adaptations to warmer conditions have occurred in the interiors of species' ranges, and resource use and dispersal have evolved rapidly at expanding range margins. Observed genetic shifts modulate local effects of climate change, but there is little evidence that they will mitigate negative effects at the species level.
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          Adaptive protein evolution at the Adh locus in Drosophila.

          Proteins often differ in amino-acid sequence across species. This difference has evolved by the accumulation of neutral mutations by random drift, the fixation of adaptive mutations by selection, or a mixture of the two. Here we propose a simple statistical test of the neutral protein evolution hypothesis based on a comparison of the number of amino-acid replacement substitutions to synonymous substitutions in the coding region of a locus. If the observed substitutions are neutral, the ratio of replacement to synonymous fixed differences between species should be the same as the ratio of replacement to synonymous polymorphisms within species. DNA sequence data on the Adh locus (encoding alcohol dehydrogenase, EC 1.1.1.1) in three species in the Drosophila melanogaster species subgroup do not fit this expectation; instead, there are more fixed replacement differences between species than expected. We suggest that these excess replacement substitutions result from adaptive fixation of selectively advantageous mutations.
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            Author and article information

            Affiliations
            [1 ]Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics, University of Amsterdam P.O. Box 94248, 1090 GE, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
            [2 ]Department Marine Zoology, Naturalis Biodiversity Center P.O. Box 9517, 2300 RA, Leiden, The Netherlands
            [3 ]Department of Oceanography School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology, University of Hawaii at Manoa Honolulu, Hawaii, 96822
            Author notes
            Correspondence , Katja T. C. A. Peijnenburg, Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics, University of Amsterdam, P.O. Box 94248, 1090 GE Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Tel: +31(0)617419693; Fax: +31(0)20 5257832; E-mail: K.T.C.A.Peijnenburg@ 123456uva.nl
            [*]

            Both authors contributed equally to this paper

            Journal
            Ecol Evol
            Ecol Evol
            ece3
            Ecology and Evolution
            Blackwell Science Inc (Oxford, UK )
            2045-7758
            2045-7758
            August 2013
            26 June 2013
            : 3
            : 8
            : 2765-2781
            3930040 10.1002/ece3.644
            © 2013 Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd

            Re-use of this article is permitted in accordance with the Creative Commons Deed, Attribution 2.5, which does not permit commercial exploitation.

            Categories
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            Evolutionary Biology

            zooplankton, selection, oceanic, marine, climate change, adaptation

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