Evolutionary studies are often limited by missing data that are critical to understanding the history of selection. Selection experiments, which reproduce rapid evolution under controlled conditions, are excellent tools to study how genomes evolve under selection. Here we present a genomic dissection of the Longshanks selection experiment, in which mice were selectively bred over 20 generations for longer tibiae relative to body mass, resulting in 13% longer tibiae in two replicates. We synthesized evolutionary theory, genome sequences and molecular genetics to understand the selection response and found that it involved both polygenic adaptation and discrete loci of major effect, with the strongest loci tending to be selected in parallel between replicates. We show that selection may favor de-repression of bone growth through inactivating two limb enhancers of an inhibitor, Nkx3-2. Our integrative genomic analyses thus show that it is possible to connect individual base-pair changes to the overall selection response.
- Campbell Rolian
The funders had no role in study design, data collection and interpretation, or the decision to submit the work for publication.
Animal experimentation: All experimental procedures described in this study have been approved by the applicable University institutional ethics committee for animal welfare at the University of Calgary (HSACC Protocols M08146 and AC13-0077); or local competent authority: Landesdirektion Sachsen, Germany, permit number 24-9168.11-9/2012-5.
- Magnus Nordborg, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Austria
© 2019, Castro et al.
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License permitting unrestricted use and redistribution provided that the original author and source are credited.
Downloads (link to download the article as PDF)
Download citations (links to download the citations from this article in formats compatible with various reference manager tools)
Open citations (links to open the citations from this article in various online reference manager services)
Islet vascularization is essential for intact islet function and glucose homeostasis. We have previously shown that primary cilia directly regulate insulin secretion. However, it remains unclear whether they are also implicated in islet vascularization. At eight weeks, murine Bbs4-/-islets show significantly lower intra-islet capillary density with enlarged diameters. Transplanted Bbs4-/- islets exhibit delayed re-vascularization and reduced vascular fenestration after engraftment, partially impairing vascular permeability and glucose delivery to β-cells. We identified primary cilia on endothelial cells as the underlying cause of this regulation, via the vascular endothelial growth factor-A (VEGF-A)/VEGF receptor 2 (VEGFR2) pathway. In vitro silencing of ciliary genes in endothelial cells disrupts VEGF-A/VEGFR2 internalization and downstream signaling. Consequently, key features of angiogenesis including proliferation and migration are attenuated in human BBS4 silenced endothelial cells. We conclude that endothelial cell primary cilia regulate islet vascularization and vascular barrier function via the VEGF-A/VEGFR2 signaling pathway.
Many adult stem cell communities are maintained by population asymmetry, where stochastic behaviors of multiple individual cells collectively result in a balance between stem cell division and differentiation. We investigated how this is achieved for Drosophila Follicle Stem Cells (FSCs) by spatially-restricted niche signals. FSCs produce transit-amplifying Follicle Cells (FCs) from their posterior face and quiescent Escort Cells (ECs) to their anterior. We show that JAK-STAT pathway activity, which declines from posterior to anterior, dictates the pattern of divisions over the FSC domain, promotes more posterior FSC locations and conversion to FCs, while opposing EC production. Wnt pathway activity declines from the anterior, promotes anterior FSC locations and EC production, and opposes FC production. The pathways combine to define a stem cell domain through concerted effects on FSC differentiation to ECs and FCs at either end of opposing signaling gradients, and impose a pattern of proliferation that matches derivative production.