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Proc Biol Sci. 1999 Jul 7;266(1426):1341-5.

Meiotic drive and evolution of female choice.

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  • 1Institut f├╝r Evolutionsbiologie und Okologie, Universit├Ąt Bonn, Germany.


As a special version of the good-genes hypothesis, it was recently proposed that females could benefit from choosing drive-resistant males in a meiotic drive system. Here, we examine with a three-locus, six-allele population genetic model whether female choice for drive resistance can evolve. An allele leading to female preference for drive-resistant males was introduced at low frequency into a population polymorphic for meiotic drive and drive resistance. Our simulations show that female choice of drive-resistant males is disadvantageous when resistance is Y-linked. This disadvantage occurs because, at equilibrium, drive-resistant males have lower reproductive success than drive-susceptible males. Thus, female choice of drive-susceptible males can evolve when resistance is Y-linked. When resistance is autosomal, selection on female choice for drive resistance is less strong and depends on the frequency of choice: female preference of resistant males is favoured when choice is rare and disadvantageous when choice is frequent, leading to a stable equilibrium at a low frequency of the choice allele. Independent of the location of drive resistance alleles, males with the non-driving allele always have above average reproductive success. Female choice is therefore beneficial when choosy females prefer males with the non-driving allele.

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