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Data from: Reduction in the cumulative effect of stress-induced inbreeding depression due to intra-generational purging in Drosophila melanogaster

Citation

Enders, Laramy S.; Nunney, Leonard (2015), Data from: Reduction in the cumulative effect of stress-induced inbreeding depression due to intra-generational purging in Drosophila melanogaster, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.t8344

Abstract

Environmental stress generally exacerbates the harmful effects of inbreeding and it has been proposed that this could be exploited in purging deleterious alleles from threatened inbred populations. However, understanding what factors contribute to variability in the strength of inbreeding depression (ID) observed across adverse environmental conditions remains a challenge. Here, we examined how the nature and timing of stress affects ID and the potential for purging using inbred and outbred Drosophila melanogaster larvae exposed to biotic (larval competition, bacteria infection) and abiotic (ethanol, heat) stressors compared with unstressed controls. ID was measured during (larval survival) and after (male mating success) stress exposure. The level of stress imposed by each stressor was approximately equal, averaging a 42% reduction in outbred larval survival relative to controls. All stressors induced on average the same ID, causing a threefold increase in lethal equivalents for larval survival relative to controls. However, stress-induced ID in larval success was followed by a 30% reduction in ID in mating success of surviving males. We propose that this fitness recovery is due to ‘intragenerational purging’ whereby fitness correlations facilitate stress-induced purging that increases the average fitness of survivors in later life history stages. For biotic stressors, post-stress reductions in ID are consistent with intragenerational purging, whereas for abiotic stressors, there appeared to be an interaction between purging and stress-induced physiological damage. For all stressors, there was no net effect of stress on lifetime ID compared with unstressed controls, undermining the prediction that stress enhances the effectiveness of population-level purging across generations.

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