Section: Evolutionary Biology
Topic: Evolution, Genetics/Genomics, Population biology

Divergence of olfactory receptors associated with the evolution of assortative mating and reproductive isolation in mice

10.24072/pcjournal.190 - Peer Community Journal, Volume 2 (2022), article no. e72.

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Deciphering the genetic bases of behavioural traits is essential to understanding how they evolve and contribute to adaptation and biological diversification, but it remains a substantial challenge, especially for behavioural traits with polygenic architectures. In this study, we developed a population genomics approach coupled with functional predictions to address the evolution and genetic basis of olfactory-based assortative mate preferences in the house mouse, suspected to have evolved as a response to selection against hybridisation. We used whole genome resequencing data and the C2 statistic of the program BAYPASS, which contrasts allele frequencies corrected for population structure, to characterize genetic differentiation between sets of populations with strong contrast in behaviour (expressing or not assortative mate preferences) and we identified some regions of the genome showing the expected significant and consistent association with behavioural divergence. A series of Olfactory and Vomeronasal Receptor genes, among the most differentiated genomic regions and in line with functional predictions, stand out as the prime candidates underlying this olfactory-based behavioural divergence. These genes form large gene clusters in the genome, with two main candidate clusters extending up to 1.8 Mb. Variant analyses indicate a potential dual role of regulatory and protein-coding changes in the evolution of choosiness. This study shows that combining expectations on the genomic patterns of divergence with functional expectations represents a promising route to unravelling the genetic architecture of complex trait variation and provides novel insights into the role of olfactory and vomeronasal receptors in mammal adaptation and speciation.

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DOI: 10.24072/pcjournal.190
Type: Research article

Smadja, Carole M. 1; Loire, Etienne 1, 2; Caminade, Pierre 1; Severac, Dany 3; Gautier, Mathieu 4; Ganem, Guila 1

1 Institut des Sciences de l’Evolution de Montpellier ISEM, Univ. Montpellier, CNRS, IRD, Montpellier, France
2 ASTRE, Cirad, INRAE, Univ. Montpellier, Montpellier, France
3 MGX, Univ. Montpellier, CNRS, INSERM, Montpellier, France
4 CBGP, INRAE, CIRAD, IRD, Montpellier SupAgro, Univ. Montpellier, Montferrier sur Lez, France
License: CC-BY 4.0
Copyrights: The authors retain unrestricted copyrights and publishing rights
     author = {Smadja, Carole M. and Loire, Etienne and Caminade, Pierre and Severac, Dany and Gautier, Mathieu and Ganem, Guila},
     title = {Divergence of olfactory receptors associated with the evolution of assortative mating and reproductive isolation in mice},
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%A Loire, Etienne
%A Caminade, Pierre
%A Severac, Dany
%A Gautier, Mathieu
%A Ganem, Guila
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Smadja, Carole M.; Loire, Etienne; Caminade, Pierre; Severac, Dany; Gautier, Mathieu; Ganem, Guila. Divergence of olfactory receptors associated with the evolution of assortative mating and reproductive isolation in mice. Peer Community Journal, Volume 2 (2022), article  no. e72. doi : 10.24072/pcjournal.190.

PCI peer reviews and recommendation, and links to data, scripts, code and supplementary information: 10.24072/pci.evolbiol.100157

Conflict of interest of the recommender and peer reviewers:
The recommender in charge of the evaluation of the article and the reviewers declared that they have no conflict of interest (as defined in the code of conduct of PCI) with the authors or with the content of the article.

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