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Genetics. Jun 2000; 155(2): 833–854.
PMCID: PMC1461120

The effects of pollen and seed migration on nuclear-dicytoplasmic systems. II. A new method for estimating plant gene flow from joint nuclear-cytoplasmic data.

Abstract

A new maximum-likelihood method is developed for estimating unidirectional pollen and seed flow in mixed-mating plant populations from counts of joint nuclear-cytoplasmic genotypes. Data may include multiple unlinked nuclear markers with a single maternally or paternally inherited cytoplasmic marker, or with two cytoplasmic markers inherited through opposite parents, as in many conifer species. Migration rate estimates are based on fitting the equilibrium genotype frequencies under continent-island models of plant gene flow to the data. Detailed analysis of their equilibrium structures indicates when each of the three nuclear-cytoplasmic systems allows gene flow estimation and shows that, in general, it is easier to estimate seed than pollen migration. Three-locus nuclear-dicytoplasmic data only increase the conditions allowing seed migration estimates; however, the additional dicytonuclear disequilibria allow more accurate estimates of both forms of gene flow. Estimates and their confidence limits for simulated data sets confirm that two-locus data with paternal cytoplasmic inheritance provide better estimates than those with maternal inheritance, while three-locus dicytonuclear data with three modes of inheritance generally provide the most reliable estimates for both types of gene flow. Similar results are obtained for hybrid zones receiving pollen and seed flow from two source populations. An estimation program is available upon request.

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Selected References

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