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Data from: Gene copy number variations as signatures of adaptive evolution in the parthenogenetic, plant-parasitic nematode Meloidogyne incognita

Citation

Castagnone-Sereno, Philippe et al. (2019), Data from: Gene copy number variations as signatures of adaptive evolution in the parthenogenetic, plant-parasitic nematode Meloidogyne incognita, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.r0s4ft2

Abstract

Adaptation to changing environmental conditions represents a challenge to parthenogenetic organisms and until now, how phenotypic variants are generated in clones in response to the selection pressure of their environment remains poorly known. The obligatory parthenogenetic root-knot nematode species Meloidogyne incognita has a worldwide distribution and is the most devastating plant-parasitic nematode. Despite its asexual reproduction, this species exhibits an unexpected capacity of adaptation to environmental constraints, e.g., resistant hosts. Here we used a genome-wide comparative hybridization strategy to evaluate variations in gene copy numbers between genotypes of M. incognita resulting from two parallel experimental evolution assays on a susceptible vs. resistant host plant. We detected gene copy number variations (CNVs) associated with the ability of the nematodes to overcome resistance of the host plant, and this genetic variation may reflect an adaptive response to host resistance in this parthenogenetic species. The CNV distribution throughout the nematode genome is not random and suggests the occurrence of genomic regions more prone to undergo duplications and losses in response to the selection pressure of the host resistance. Furthermore, our analysis revealed an outstanding level of gene loss events in nematode genotypes that have overcome the resistance. Overall, our results support the view that gene loss could be a common class of adaptive genetic mechanism in response to a challenging new biotic environment in clonal animals.

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