We investigate maintenance of quantitative genetic variation at mutation-selection balance for multiple traits. The intrinsic strength of real stabilizing selection on one of these traits denoted the “target trait” and the observed strength of apparent stabilizing selection on the target trait can be quite different: the latter, which is estimable, is much smaller (i.e., implying stronger selection) than the former. Distinguishing them may enable the mutation load to be relaxed when considering multivariate stabilizing selection. It is shown that both correlations among mutational effects and among strengths of real stabilizing selection on the traits are not important unless they are high. The analysis for independent situations thus provides a good approximation to the case where mutant and stabilizing selection effects are correlated. Multivariate stabilizing selection can be regarded as a combination of stabilizing selection on the target trait and the pleiotropic direct selection on fitness that is solely due to the effects of real stabilizing selection on the hidden traits. As the overall fitness approaches a constant value as the number of traits increases, multivariate stabilizing selection can maintain abundant genetic variance only under quite weak selection. The common observations of high polygenic variance and strong stabilizing selection thus imply that if the mutation-selection balance is the true mechanism of maintenance of genetic variation, the apparent stabilizing selection cannot arise solely by real stabilizing selection simultaneously on many metric traits.
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.
Vol. 57 • No. 8