Genome-culture coevolution promotes rapid divergence of killer whale ecotypes

Foote, Andrew David; Vijay, Nagarjun; Ávila-Arcos, María C.; Baird, Robin W.; Durban, John W.; Fumagalli, Matteo; Gibbs, Richard A.; Hanson, M. Bradley; Korneliussen, Thorfinn S.; Martin, Michael D.; Robertson, Kelly M.; Martins Conde e Sousa, Vitor; Vieira, Filipe G.; Vinar, Tomás; Wade, Paul; Worley, Kim C.; Excoffier, Laurent; Morin, Phillip A.; Gilbert, M. Thomas P. and Wolf, Jochen B.W. (2016). Genome-culture coevolution promotes rapid divergence of killer whale ecotypes. Nature communications, 7(7), p. 11693. Nature Publishing Group 10.1038/ncomms11693

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Analysing population genomic data from killer whale ecotypes, which we estimate have globally radiated within less than 250,000 years, we show that genetic structuring including the segregation of potentially functional alleles is associated with socially inherited ecological niche. Reconstruction of ancestral demographic history revealed bottlenecks during founder events, likely promoting ecological divergence and genetic drift resulting in a wide range of genome-wide differentiation between pairs of allopatric and sympatric ecotypes. Functional enrichment analyses provided evidence for regional genomic divergence associated with habitat, dietary preferences and post-zygotic reproductive isolation. Our findings are consistent with expansion of small founder groups into novel niches by an initial plastic behavioural response, perpetuated by social learning imposing an altered natural selection regime. The study constitutes an important step towards an understanding of the complex interaction between demographic history, culture, ecological adaptation and evolution at the genomic level.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)

Division/Institute:

08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Ecology and Evolution (IEE)

UniBE Contributor:

Foote, Andrew David; Martins Conde e Sousa, Vitor and Excoffier, Laurent

Subjects:

500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology

ISSN:

2041-1723

Publisher:

Nature Publishing Group

Language:

English

Submitter:

Susanne Holenstein

Date Deposited:

24 Jul 2018 10:11

Last Modified:

29 Jul 2018 02:33

Publisher DOI:

10.1038/ncomms11693

BORIS DOI:

10.7892/boris.118928

URI:

https://boris.unibe.ch/id/eprint/118928

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