Report

A Single Gene Affects Both Ecological Divergence and Mate Choice in Drosophila

See allHide authors and affiliations

Science  13 Feb 2014:
1245026
DOI: 10.1126/science.1249998

You are currently viewing the abstract.

View Full Text

Log in to view the full text

Log in through your institution

Log in through your institution

Abstract

Evolutionary changes in traits involved in both ecological divergence and mate choice may produce reproductive isolation and speciation. However, there are few examples of such dual traits, and the genetic and molecular bases of their evolution have not been identified. We show that methyl-branched cuticular hydrocarbons (mbCHCs) are a dual trait that affects both desiccation resistance and mate choice in Drosophila serrata. We identify a fatty acid synthase mFAS (CG3524) responsible for mbCHC production in Drosophila and find that expression of mFAS is undetectable in oenocytes (cells that produce CHCs) of a closely related, desiccation-sensitive species, D. birchii, due in part to multiple changes in cis-regulatory sequences of mFAS. We suggest that ecologically influenced changes in the production of mbCHCs have contributed to reproductive isolation between the two species.

View Full Text