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Open AccessArticle

Decreased Temperature Sensitivity of Vestigial Gene Expression in Temperate Populations of Drosophila melanogaster

1
Section of Evolutionary Biology, Department of Biology II, University of Munich, Planegg-Martinsried, 82152 Munich, Germany
2
Applied Zoology, Faculty of Biology, Technische Universität Dresden, 01217 Dresden, Germany
3
Lunenfeld-Tanenbaum Research Institute, Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto, ON M5G 1X5, Canada
4
Leibniz Institute for Evolution and Biodiversity Science, 10115 Berlin, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
This work is part of her Ph.D. Thesis.
Genes 2019, 10(7), 498; https://doi.org/10.3390/genes10070498
Received: 25 April 2019 / Revised: 5 June 2019 / Accepted: 21 June 2019 / Published: 28 June 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Evolutionary Genetics of Gene Expression)
Drosophila melanogaster recently spread from its tropical origin in Africa and became a cosmopolitan species that has adapted to a wide range of different thermal environments, including temperate climates. An important limiting factor of temperate climates has probably been their low and varying temperatures. The transcriptional output of genes can vary across temperatures, which might have been detrimental while settling in temperate environments. The reduction of temperature-sensitive expression of functionally important genes to ensure consistent levels of gene expression might have been relevant while adapting to such environments. In this study, we focus on the gene vestigial (vg) whose product is a key factor in wing development. We provide evidence that temperature-sensitivity of vg has been buffered in populations from temperate climates. We investigated temperature-sensitivity of vg gene expression in six natural populations, including four temperate populations (three from Europe and one from high-altitude Africa), and two tropical populations from the ancestral species range. All temperate populations exhibited a lower degree of temperature-induced expression plasticity than the tropical populations. View Full-Text
Keywords: evolution of gene regulation; environmental sensitivity; expression plasticity; temperature-dependent expression evolution of gene regulation; environmental sensitivity; expression plasticity; temperature-dependent expression
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MDPI and ACS Style

Voigt, S.; Erpf, A.C.; Stephan, W. Decreased Temperature Sensitivity of Vestigial Gene Expression in Temperate Populations of Drosophila melanogaster. Genes 2019, 10, 498. https://doi.org/10.3390/genes10070498

AMA Style

Voigt S, Erpf AC, Stephan W. Decreased Temperature Sensitivity of Vestigial Gene Expression in Temperate Populations of Drosophila melanogaster. Genes. 2019; 10(7):498. https://doi.org/10.3390/genes10070498

Chicago/Turabian Style

Voigt, Susanne; Erpf, Anna C.; Stephan, Wolfgang. 2019. "Decreased Temperature Sensitivity of Vestigial Gene Expression in Temperate Populations of Drosophila melanogaster" Genes 10, no. 7: 498. https://doi.org/10.3390/genes10070498

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