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      Genetics of ecological divergence during speciation

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          Abstract

          Ecological differences often evolve early in speciation as divergent natural selection drives adaptation to distinct ecological niches, leading ultimately to reproductive isolation. Though this process is a major generator of biodiversity, its genetic basis remains poorly understood. Here we investigate the genetic architecture of niche differentiation in a sympatric species pair of threespine stickleback fish by mapping the environment-dependent effects of phenotypic traits on hybrid feeding and performance under semi-natural conditions. We show that multiple, unlinked loci act largely additively to determine position along the major niche axis separating these recently diverged species. We also find that functional mismatch between phenotypic traits reduces growth of some stickleback hybrids beyond that expected from an intermediate phenotype, suggesting a role for epistasis between the underlying genes. This functional mismatch might lead to hybrid incompatibilities that are analogous to those underlying intrinsic reproductive isolation but that depend on the ecological context.

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          Most cited references 96

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          A new look at the statistical model identification

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            The genetical theory of natural selection.

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              USING STABLE ISOTOPES TO ESTIMATE TROPHIC POSITION: MODELS, METHODS, AND ASSUMPTIONS

               David Post (2002)
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                0410462
                6011
                Nature
                Nature
                Nature
                0028-0836
                1476-4687
                30 July 2014
                08 June 2014
                17 July 2014
                17 January 2015
                : 511
                : 7509
                : 307-311
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Human Biology and Basic Sciences Divisions, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, WA 98109, USA
                [2 ]Biodiversity Research Centre and Zoology Department, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z4, Canada
                [3 ]Department of Evolution and Ecology, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, USA
                [4 ]Department of Aquatic Ecology, EAWAG, 79 Seestraße, Kastanienbaum, Switzerland
                [5 ]Department of Aquatic Resources, Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Drottningholm, Sweden
                [6 ]Department of Developmental Biology and Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, CA 94305, USA
                Author notes
                Correspondence and requests for materials should be addressed to M.E.A. ( marnegar@ 123456fhcrc.org )
                Article
                NIHMS581866
                10.1038/nature13301
                4149549
                24909991
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