Comparisons of estimates of genetic differentiation at molecular markers (FST) and at quantitative traits (QST) are a means of inferring the level and heterogeneity of selection in natural populations. However, such comparisons are questionable because they require that the influence of drift and selection on QST be detectable over possible background influences of environmental or nonadditive genetic effects on QST-values. Here we test this using an experimental evolution approach in metapopulations of Arabidopsis thaliana experiencing different levels of drift and selection heterogeneity. We estimated the intensity and heterogeneity of selection on morphological and phenological traits via selection differentials. We demonstrate that QST-values increased with increasing selection heterogeneity when genetic drift was limited. The effect of selection on QST was thus detectable despite significant genotype-by-environment interactions that most probably biased the estimates of genetic differentiation. Although they cannot be used as a direct validation of the conclusions of prior studies, our results strongly support both the relevance of QST as an estimator of genetic differentiation and the role of local selection in shaping the genetic differentiation of natural populations.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.