A strong quantitative trait locus for wing length on chromosome 2 in a wild population of great reed warblers

Hernandez Sanchez, Julio, Tarka, M, Akesson, M, Hasselquist, D, Bensch, S, & Hansson, B (2010) A strong quantitative trait locus for wing length on chromosome 2 in a wild population of great reed warblers. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences, 277(1692), pp. 2361-2369.

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Abstract

Wing length is a key character for essential behaviours related to bird flight such as migration and foraging. In the present study, we initiate the search for the genes underlying wing length in birds by studying a long-distance migrant, the great reed warbler (Acrocephalus arundinaceus). In this species wing length is an evolutionary interesting trait with pronounced latitudinal gradient and sex-specific selection regimes in local populations. We performed a quantitative trait locus (QTL) scan for wing length in great reed warblers using phenotypic, genotypic, pedigree and linkage map data from our long-term study population in Sweden. We applied the linkage analysis mapping method implemented in GRIDQTL (a new web-based software) and detected a genome-wide significant QTL for wing length on chromosome 2, to our knowledge, the first detected QTL in wild birds. The QTL extended over 25 cM and accounted for a substantial part (37%) of the phenotypic variance of the trait. A genome scan for tarsus length (a bodysize-related trait) did not show any signal, implying that the wing-length QTL on chromosome 2 was not associated with body size. Our results provide a first important step into understanding the genetic architecture of avian wing length, and give opportunities to study the evolutionary dynamics of wing length at the locus level. This journal is© 2010 The Royal Society.

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ID Code: 58107
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: chromosome, genetic engineering, genome, phenotypic plasticity, songbird, wild population, wing, chromosome map, quantitative trait locus, Flight, Quantitative Trait Loci, Tarsus, Acrocephalus arundinaceus, Aves
DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2010.0033
ISSN: 09628452
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES (060000) > GENETICS (060400) > Genomics (060408)
Divisions: Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Deposited On: 12 Mar 2013 01:32
Last Modified: 06 May 2013 03:26

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