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Long-term selection for a quantitative character in large replicate populations of Drosophila melanogaster

Part 4: Relaxed and reverse selection

Summary

Reverse and relaxed selection were carried out in sublines which were derived from six replicate lines of Drosophila during 86–89 generations of selection for increased abdominal bristle number, and the reverse selection sublines were reciprocally crossed with selection lines of their origin.

The results of serial relaxed selection initiated at different generations of selection confirm that the accelerated responses observed in the selection lines were largely due to deleterious genes, particularly lethals, with large effects on the selected character. The decline in mean bristle number under relaxed selection was not much different between crowded and uncrowded relaxed sublines.

Reverse selection initiated at generation 57 was very effective, though it failed to bring the mean back to the base population level, and the genetic differences between replicate sublines (two from each of the six lines) indicate that low bristle number genes were probably rare in the selection lines. The genes which were still segregating after 57 generations of selection, on the average, did not show any directional dominance. The contribution of the X-chromosome to selection response was proportional to its chromosome length.

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Communicated by J.S.F. Barker

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Yoo, B.H., Nicholas, F.W. & Rathie, K.A. Long-term selection for a quantitative character in large replicate populations of Drosophila melanogaster . Theoret. Appl. Genetics 57, 113–117 (1980). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00253881

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Key words

  • Long-term selection
  • Relaxed selection
  • Reverse selection
  • Dominance of bristle number genes
  • Drosophila melanogaster