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Self and nonself recognition affects clonal reproduction and competition in the pea aphid

Citation

Akimoto, Shin-ichi; Li, Yang (2021), Self and nonself recognition affects clonal reproduction and competition in the pea aphid, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.8gtht76mh

Abstract

The spatial interaction of clonal organisms is an unsolved but crucial topic in evolutionary biology. We evaluated the interactions between aphid clones using a color mutant (yellow) and an original (green) clone. Colonies founded by two aphids of the same clone and mixed colonies, founded by a green aphid and a yellow aphid, were set up to observe population growth for 15 days. We confirmed positive competition effects, with mixed colonies increasing in size more rapidly than clonal colonies. In mixed colonies where reproduction started simultaneously, green aphids overwhelmed yellow aphids in number, and yellow aphids restrained reproduction. However, when yellow aphids started to reproduce earlier, they outnumbered the green aphids. To test whether aphids have the ability to control reproduction according to the densities of self and non-self clones, one yellow aphid or one antennae-excised yellow aphid was transferred into a highly dense green clone colony. Intact yellow aphids produced fewer nymphs in crowded green colonies, whereas the fecundity of antennae-excised aphids did not change. Thus, we conclude that aphid clones can discriminate between self and non-self clones, and can regulate their reproduction, depending on whether they are superior or inferior in number to their competitors.

Funding

Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Award: 19K06848