Finite-sites multiple mutations interference gives rise to wavelet-like oscillations of multilocus linkage disequilibrium
Within-host adaptation of pathogens such as human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) often occurs at more than two loci. Multiple beneficial mutations may arise simultaneously on different genetic backgrounds and interfere, affecting each other's fixation trajectories. Here, we explore how these adaptive dynamics are mirrored in multilocus linkage disequilibrium (MLD), a measure of multi- way associations between alleles. In the parameter regime corresponding to HIV, we show that deterministic early infection models induce MLD to oscillate over time in a wavelet-like fashion. We find that the frequency of these oscillations is proportional to the rate of adaptation. This signature is robust to drift, but can be eroded by high variation in fitness effects of beneficial mutations. Our findings suggest that MLD oscillations could be used as a signature of interference among multiple equally advantageous mutations and may aid the interpretation of MLD in data.
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