Evolutionary Ecology

, Volume 22, Issue 5, pp 593–605 | Cite as

Divergence at neutral and non-neutral loci in Drosophila buzzatii populations and their hybrids

  • Ditte Holm Andersen
  • Cino Pertoldi
  • Volker Loeschcke
  • Sandro Cavicchi
  • Valerio Scali
Original Paper


The impact of intraspecific hybridisation on fitness and morphological traits depends on the history of natural selection and genetic drift, which may have led to differently coadapted gene-complexes in the parental populations. The divergence at neutral and non-neutral loci between populations can be evaluated by estimating FST and QST respectively, and hence give an estimate of drift and selection in the populations. Here we investigate (1) whether divergence between populations in quantitative traits (wing size and shape) can be attributed to selection or drift alone, (2) The impact of intraspecific hybridisation on estimators for divergence at neutral (FST) and non-neutral loci (QST) in hybrids, (3) If measurement of shape is more informative than size in order to detect divergence in quantitative traits between populations. The aims were addressed by performing two hybridisations between three populations of Drosophila buzzatii, one between populations from Argentina and the Canary Islands (separated for 200 years), and the other between populations from Argentina and Australia (separated for 80 years). We observed the highest divergence at neutral loci between the Argentinean and Canary Island populations, but highest morphological divergence between the Argentinean and Australian populations, indicating that natural selection is acting on the wings. Divergence based on QST measures in the hybrids was sensitive towards increased phenotypic variance (σ2p) within groups and should be used with care when σ2p of populations differ. Our results indicate that measures of shape give a better estimate of divergence at the underlying quantitative traits loci than measures of size.


Drift FST Microsatellites QST Quantitative traits Selection Shape analysis 



We would like to thank Jørgen Bundgaard for providing the Masca flies and two anonymous reviewers for valuable comments. The work was supported by grants from the Villum Kann Rasmussen Foundation (VKR-05-024) and Oticon Foundation (03-1397) to Ditte Holm Andersen and by grants from the Danish Research Agency (21-01-0526, 21-03-0125 and 272-06-0053) and the Marie Curie Fellowship of the European Community Host Development program under contract number HPMD-CT-2000–00009 to Cino Pertoldi, and support to Valerio Scali by the Canziani Bequest and MIUR. (Ministero Industria Universitá Ricerca).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ditte Holm Andersen
    • 1
    • 2
  • Cino Pertoldi
    • 2
    • 3
  • Volker Loeschcke
    • 2
  • Sandro Cavicchi
    • 1
  • Valerio Scali
    • 1
  1. 1.Dipartimento di Biologia Evoluzionistica SperimentaleBolognaItaly
  2. 2.Department of Ecology and GeneticsAarhus UniversityAarhus CDenmark
  3. 3.Department of Wildlife Ecology and BiodiversityNational Environmental Research InstituteRondeDenmark

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