Evol Ecol Res 18: 677-691 (2017)     Full PDF if your library subscribes.

Advantages of sexual reproduction resulting from sibling diversity: effects of selection intensity, environmental variance, and reduced genetic diversity

Makoto Douge and Yoh Iwasa

Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Kyushu University, Fukuoka, Japan

Correspondence: M. Douge, Department of Biology, Faculty of Science, Kyushu University, 744 Motooka, Nishi-ku, Fukuoka 819-0395, Japan. email: makotodouge@gmail.com


Background: In a previous paper, we showed that greater sibling diversity among sexual offspring might help to maintain sexual reproduction in environments that are spatially heterogeneous and temporally fluctuating and in which sib-competition is very intense.

Question: Can sexual reproduction be maintained in the face of the two-fold cost of sex under milder selection pressure, environmental variance, and reduced genetic diversity?

Methodology: Mathematical and numerical analyses of the sib-competition model with several modifications.

Conclusions: The advantages of sexual reproduction are attenuated by milder selection pressure and environmental variance but enhanced by reduced genetic diversity. Sib-competition plays an important role in maintaining sex when the appropriate conditions are present.

Keywords: evolution of sex, sib-competition, milder selection, environmental variance, reduced genetic diversity.

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