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Genetics. 1999 Jun;152(2):543-51.

Positive selection drives the evolution of the Acp29AB accessory gland protein in Drosophila.

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Departament de Genètica, Facultat de Biologia, Universitat de Barcelona, 08071 Barcelona, Spain.


Nucleotide sequence variation at the Acp29AB gene region has been surveyed in Drosophila melanogaster from Spain (12 lines), Ivory Coast (14 lines), and Malawi (13 lines) and in one line of D. simulans. The approximately 1.7-kb region studied encompasses the Acp29AB gene that codes for a male accessory gland protein and its flanking regions. Seventy-seven nucleotide and 8 length polymorphisms were detected. Nonsynonymous polymorphism was an order of magnitude lower than synonymous polymorphism, but still high relative to other non-sex-related genes. In D. melanogaster variation at this region revealed no major genetic differentiation between East and West African populations, while differentiation was highly significant between the European and the two African populations. Comparison of polymorphism and divergence at synonymous and nonsynonymous sites showed an excess of fixed nonsynonymous changes, which indicates that the evolution of the Acp29AB protein has been driven by directional selection at least after the split of the D. melanogaster and D. simulans lineages. The pattern of variation in extant populations of D. melanogaster favors a scenario where the fixation of advantageous replacement substitutions occurred in the early stages of speciation and balancing selection is maintaining variation in this species.

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