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Genetics. 1978 Apr;88(4):813-27.

Clines with asymmetric migration.

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  • Department of Biophysics and Theoretical Biology, The University of Chicago, 920 East 58th Street, Chicago, Illinois 60637.


The consequences of asymmetric dispersion on the maintenance of an allele in a one-dimensional environmental pocket are examined. The diffusion model of migration and selection is restricted to a single diallelic locus in a monoecious population in the absence of mutation and random drift. It is further supposed that migration is homogeneous and independent of genotype, the population density is constant and uniform, and Hardy-Weinberg proportions obtain locally. If dispersion is preferentially out of an environmental pocket at the end of a very long habitat, the condition for maintaining the allele favored in the pocket becomes less stringent than for symmetric migration; dispersion preferentially into the pocket increases the severity of the condition for polymorphism. If an allele is harmful in large regions on both sides of an environmental pocket, the probability for polymorphism is decreased by asymmetric migration. The criterion for the existence of a cline is independent of the sense of the asymmetry; the cline itself is not. These phenomena are studied both analytically and numerically.-It is shown for symmetric migration and variable population density that the more densely populated parts of the habitat are more influential in determining gene frequency than the others. Thus, the higher the population density in an environmental pocket, the more easily an allele beneficial in the pocket will be maintained in the population.

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