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Data from: Heterozygosity-behaviour correlations in nine-spined stickleback (Pungitius pungitius) populations: contrasting effects at random and functional loci

Citation

Laine, Veronika N.; Herczeg, Gábor; Shikano, Takahito; Primmer, Craig R. (2012), Data from: Heterozygosity-behaviour correlations in nine-spined stickleback (Pungitius pungitius) populations: contrasting effects at random and functional loci, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.sh487

Abstract

The study of heterozygosity-fitness correlations has a long history in the fields of ecology and evolutionary biology but remains controversial. Recently, it has been shown that the location of markers i.e. their genomic position with respect to their distance from functional loci can be an important factor to be considered in addition to marker number and variability. In this study, we investigated the correlation between individual heterozygosity and behaviour (aggression, boldness and feeding activity) in nine-spined stickleback individuals originating from four populations in two contrasting environments. Offspring of full-sib families raised in a common garden setting were assessed for behaviour and genotyped using 84 microsatellite markers that were either located within or near behaviourally or physiologically important genes (termed ‘functional’) or were randomly selected. No associations were detected with any behavioural trait in any population or over all populations when genetic variability was measured using all markers combined. However, when the markers were separated into three functional categories, several significant associations were observed both with functional markers and random markers in one of the four populations. Contrasting correlations with behaviour were observed when using physiological gene (negative) and random (positive) markers. Upon dividing the physiological gene markers into further subcategories based on their specific physiological functions, a strong relationship between the heterozygosity of markers linked to osmoregulation-related genes and behaviour was revealed in the brackish water population. Our results indicate that both local (physiological) and general (neutral) effects are important in shaping behaviour and that heterozygosity-behaviour correlations are population dependent.

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