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Evolution. 2008 Dec;62(12):2958-70. doi: 10.1111/j.1558-5646.2008.00475.x. Epub 2008 Aug 6.

Toward the evolutionary genomics of gametophytic divergence: patterns of transmission ratio distortion in monkeyflower (Mimulus) hybrids reveal a complex genetic basis for conspecific pollen precedence.

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Division of Biological Sciences, University of Montana, Missoula, MT 59812, USA.


Conspecific pollen precedence (CPP) is a major component of reproductive isolation between many flowering plant taxa and may reveal mechanisms of gametophytic evolution within species, but little is known about the genetic basis and evolutionary history of CPP. We systematically investigated the genetic architecture of CPP using patterns of transmission ratio distortion (TRD) in F2 and backcross hybrids between closely related species of Mimulus (Phrymaceae) with divergent mating systems. We found that CPP in Mimulus hybrids was polygenic and was the majority source of interspecific TRD genome-wide, with at least eight genomic regions contributing to the transmission advantage of M. guttatus pollen grains on M. guttatus styles. In aggregate, these male-specific transmission ratio distorting loci (TRDLs) were more than sufficient to account for the 100% precedence of pure M. guttatus pollen over M. nasutus pollen in mixed pollinations of M. guttatus. All but one of these pollen TRDLs were style-dependent; that is, we observed pollen TRD in F(1) and/or M. guttatus styles, but not in M. nasutus styles. These findings suggest that species-specific differences in pollen tube performance accumulate gradually and may have been driven by coevolution between pollen and style in the predominantly outcrossing M. guttatus.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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