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Dispersal Alters the Nature and Scope of Sexually Antagonistic Variation.

Authors
  • Flintham, Ewan O
  • Savolainen, Vincent
  • Mullon, Charles
Type
Published Article
Journal
The American Naturalist
Publisher
The University of Chicago Press
Publication Date
May 01, 2021
Volume
197
Issue
5
Pages
543–559
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1086/713739
PMID: 33908829
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

AbstractIntralocus sexual conflict, or sexual antagonism, occurs when alleles have opposing fitness effects in the two sexes. Previous theory suggests that sexual antagonism is a driver of genetic variation by generating balancing selection. However, most of these studies assume that populations are well mixed, neglecting the effects of spatial subdivision. Here, we use mathematical modeling to show that limited dispersal changes evolution at sexually antagonistic autosomal and X-linked loci as a result of inbreeding and sex-specific kin competition. We find that if the sexes disperse at different rates, kin competition within the philopatric sex biases intralocus conflict in favor of the more dispersive sex. Furthermore, kin competition diminishes the strength of balancing selection relative to genetic drift, reducing genetic variation in small subdivided populations. Meanwhile, by decreasing heterozygosity, inbreeding reduces the scope for sexually antagonistic polymorphism due to nonadditive allelic effects, and this occurs to a greater extent on the X chromosome than autosomes. Overall, our results indicate that spatial structure is a relevant factor in predicting where sexually antagonistic alleles might be observed. We suggest that sex-specific dispersal ecology and demography can contribute to interspecific and intragenomic variation in sexual antagonism.

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