School seminar series: Mutation, selection, and evolution

26 April 2013

Presented by Dr Katrina McGuigan, School of Biological Science, The University of Queensland

Many different traits appear to be under selection, and all appear to have ample genetic variation. However, if variation in these traits contributed independently to fitness, and if mutations independently affected each trait, fitness would be implausibly low, and the mutation rate implausibly high. Theories exploring the evolution ofgenetic variation predict that standing genetic variation will be predominantly composed of low frequency alleles with deleterious pleiotropic effects on fitness. These theoretical expectations are consistent with different types of evidence, and have broad implications for understanding the targets of selection in natural populations. In this talk I will present data from experiments in the native vinegar fly, Drosophila serrata, exploring the effects of selection and mutation on genetic variation, and on the evolution of traits.

Followed by lunch at the Grandstand ($5 students, $10 staff) - please RSVP to Frank Seebacher by 5pm Thursday if you wish to come along (

Time: 1-2pm

Location: DT Anderson Lecture Theatre, A08