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Data from: Sustained positive consequences of genetic rescue of fitness and behavioural traits in inbred populations of Drosophila melanogaster

Citation

Jørgensen, Daniel Bang; Ørsted, Michael; Kristensen, Torsten Nygaard (2022), Data from: Sustained positive consequences of genetic rescue of fitness and behavioural traits in inbred populations of Drosophila melanogaster, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.0cfxpnw50

Abstract

One solution to alleviate the detrimental genetic effects associated with reductions in population size and fragmentation is to introduce immigrants from other populations. While the effects of this genetic rescue on fitness traits are fairly well known, it is less clear to what extent inbreeding depression and subsequent genetic rescue affects behavioural traits. In this study, replicated crosses between inbred lines of Drosophila melanogaster were performed in order to investigate the effects of inbreeding and genetic rescue on egg-to-adult viability and negative geotaxis behaviour - a locomotor response used to measure e.g. the effects of physiological ageing. Transgenerational effects of outcrossing were investigated by examining the fitness consequences in both the F1 and F4 generation. The majority of inbred lines showed evidence for inbreeding depression for both egg-to-adult viability and behavioural performance (95% and 66% of lines, respectively), with inbreeding depression being more pronounced for viability compared to locomotor response. Subsequent outcrossing with immigrants led to an alleviation of the negative effects for both viability and geotaxis response resulting in inbred lines being similar to the outbred controls, with beneficial effects persisting from F1 to F4. Overall, the results clearly show that genetic rescue can provide transgenerational rescue of small, inbred populations by rapidly improving population fitness components. Thus, we show that even the negative effects of inbreeding on behaviour, similar to that of neurodegeneration associated with physiological ageing, can be reversed by genetic rescue.

Funding

Danmarks Frie Forskningsfond, Award: DFF-0170-00006B

Danmarks Frie Forskningsfond, Award: DFF-8021-00014B