A comparative study on karyotypic diversification rate in mammals

Martinez, P A; Jacobina, U P; Fernandes, R V; Brito, C; Penone, Caterina; Amado, T F; Fonseca, C R; Bidau, C J (2017). A comparative study on karyotypic diversification rate in mammals. Heredity, 118(4), pp. 366-373. The Genetics Society 10.1038/hdy.2016.110

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Chromosomal rearrangements have a relevant role in organismic evolution. However, little is known about the mechanisms that lead different phylogenetic clades to have different chromosomal rearrangement rates. Here, we investigate the causes behind the wide karyotypic diversity exhibited by mammals. In particular, we analyzed the role of metabolic, reproductive, biogeographic and genomic characteristics on the rates of macro- and microstructural karyotypic diversification (rKD) using comparative phylogenetic methods. We found evidence that reproductive characteristics such as larger litter size per year and longevity, by allowing a higher number of meioses in absolute time, favor a higher probability of chromosomal change. Furthermore, families with large geographic distributions but containing species with restricted geographic ranges showed a greater probability of fixation of macrostructural chromosomal changes in different geographic areas. Finally, rKD does not evolve by Brownian motion because the mutation rate depends on the concerted evolution of repetitive sequences. The decisive factors of rKD evolution will be natural selection, genetic drift and meiotic drive that will eventually allow or not the fixation of the rearrangements. Our results indicate that mammalian karyotypic diversity is influenced by historical and adaptive mechanisms where reproductive and genomic factors modulate the rate of chromosomal change.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Plant Sciences (IPS) > Plant Ecology
08 Faculty of Science > Department of Biology > Institute of Plant Sciences (IPS)

UniBE Contributor:

Penone, Caterina


500 Science > 580 Plants (Botany)




The Genetics Society




Peter Alfred von Ballmoos-Haas

Date Deposited:

06 Jul 2017 15:04

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 15:05

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