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Sexual antagonism drives the displacement of polymorphism across gene regulatory cascades

Hill, M; Reuter, M; Stewart, A; (2019) Sexual antagonism drives the displacement of polymorphism across gene regulatory cascades. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences , 286 (1904) , Article 20190660. 10.1098/rspb.2019.0660. Green open access

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Abstract

Males and females have different reproductive roles and are often subject to contrasting selection pressures. This sexual antagonism can lead, at a given locus, to different alleles being favoured in each sex and, consequently, to genetic variation being maintained in a population. Although the presence of sexually antagonistic (SA) polymorphisms has been documented across a range of species, their evolutionary dynamics remain poorly understood. Here, we study SA selection on gene expression, which is fundamental to sexual dimorphism, via the evolution of regulatory binding sites. We show that for sites longer than 1 nucleotide, expression polymorphism is maintained only when intermediate expression levels are deleterious to both sexes. We then show that, in a regulatory cascade, expression polymorphism tends to become displaced over evolutionary time from the target of SA selection to upstream regulators. Our results have consequences for understanding the evolution of sexual dimorphism, and provide specific empirical predictions for the regulatory architecture of genes under SA selection.

Type: Article
Title: Sexual antagonism drives the displacement of polymorphism across gene regulatory cascades
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2019.0660
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1098/rspb.2019.0660
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: transcription factor, regulatory cascade, sexual antagonism, gene regulation, binding site
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Genetics, Evolution and Environment
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10076024
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