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Genetics. 1995 Feb;139(2):1007-11.

On the effective size of populations with separate sexes, with particular reference to sex-linked genes.

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  • Institute of Cell, Animal and Population Biology, University of Edinburgh, Scotland.


Inconsistencies between equations for the effective population size of populations with separate sexes obtained by two different approaches are explained. One approach, which is the most common in the literature, is based on the assumption that the sex of the progeny cannot be identified. The second approach incorporates identification of the sexes of both parents and offspring. The approaches lead to identical expressions for effective size under some situations, such as Poisson distributions of offspring numbers. In general, however, the first approach gives incorrect answers, which become particularly severe for sex-linked genes, because then only numbers of daughters of males are relevant. Predictions of the effective size for sex-linked genes are illustrated for different systems of mating.

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