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Novel insights into joint estimations of demography, mutation rate, and selection using UV sex chromosomes

By Sarah B. Carey, James H. Peniston, Adam C. Payton, Min Kim, Anna Lipzen, Diane Bauer, Kathleen Lail, Chris Daum, Kerrie Barry, Jerry W Jenkins, Jane Grimwood, Jeremy Schmutz, Stuart F. McDaniel

Posted 31 Mar 2021
bioRxiv DOI: 10.1101/2021.03.30.437085

A central goal in evolutionary genomics is to understand the processes that shape genetic variation in natural populations. In anisogamous species, these processes may generate asymmetries between genes transmitted through sperm or eggs. The unique inheritance of sex chromosomes facilitates studying such asymmetries, but in many systems sex-biased mutation, demography, and selection are confounded with suppressed recombination in only one sex (the W in females, or the Y in males). However, in a UV sex-determination system, both sex chromosomes are sex-specific and experience suppressed recombination. Here we built a spatially-structured simulation to examine the effects of population density and sex-ratio on female and male effective population size in haploids and compare the results to polymorphism data from whole-genome resequencing of the moss Ceratodon purpureus. In the parameter space we simulated, males nearly always had a lower effective population size than females. Using the C. purpureus resequencing data, we found the U and V have lower nucleotide diversity than the autosomal mean, and the V is much lower than the U, however, we found no parameter set in the model that explained both the U/V and U/autosome ratios we observed. We next used standard molecular evolutionary analyses to test for sex-biased mutation and selection. We found that males had a higher mutation rate but that natural selection shapes variation on the UV sex chromosomes. All together the moss system highlights how anisogamy alone can exert a profound influence on genome-wide patterns of molecular evolution.

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