• Eviatar Nevo

      Articles written in Journal of Genetics

    • Aggression patterns in adaptation and speciation of subterranean mole rats

      Eviatar Nevo Giora Heth Avigdor Beiles

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      The patterns and correlates of aggressionwithin andbetween actively speciating subterranean mole rats of theSpalax ehrenbergi superspecies in Israel were tested in an attempt to approach an evolutionary theory of aggression related to both adaptation and speciation. Laboratory experiments were conducted on 314 adult mole rats (188 males and 126 females) caught in nature, representing 12 populations and comprising four chromosomal species (2n = 52, 54, 58, 60). The present analysis concentrates on “total aggression” comprising four aggressive variables: attacks, bitings, head-ons and sniffing with open mouth, out of 23 recorded variables. The results indicate that (a) aggression is distributed as a multipeak, discontinuous phenotypic parameter, displaying polymorphism within all 12 populations and 4 species tested; (b) the level of aggression was higher in males than in females, in the breeding than in the nonbreeding season, and displayed clinal geographic variation in both sexes across the superspecies range, where “militancy” increased northwards; (c) aggression was significantly correlated with ecological, physiological, genetical and ethological factors. These results support an evolutionary theory of aggression related to the intertwined processes of adaptation and speciation.

    • Multidimensional analysis of Drosophila wing variation in Evolution Canyon

      Vincent Debat Raphael Cornette Abraham B. Koral Eviatar Nevo David Soulet Jean R. David

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      Environmental stress has been suggested to be a major evolutionary force, both through inducing strong selection and because of its direct impact on developmental buffering processes that alter the evolvability of organisms. In particular, temperature has attracted much attention because of its importance as an ecological feature and the relative ease with which it can be experimentally manipulated in the lab. Evolution Canyon, Lower Nahal Oren, Israel, is a well studied natural site where ecological parameters are suspected to drive evolutionary differentiation. In this study, using Drosophila melanogaster isofemale lines derived from wild flies collected on both slopes of the canyon, we investigated the effect of developmental temperature upon the different components of phenotypic variation of a complex trait: the wing. Combining geometric and traditional morphometrics, we find only limited evidence for a differentiation among slopes. Investigating simultaneously phenotypic plasticity, genetic variation among isofemale lines, variation among individuals and fluctuating asymmetry, we could not identify a consistent effect of the stressful conditions encountered on the south facing slope. The prevailing structuring effect is that of the experimentally manipulated temperature which clearly influences wing mean size and shape. Variability, in contrast, is not consistently affected by temperature. Finally, we investigated the specific relationship between individual variation and fluctuating asymmetry. Using metric multi-dimensional scaling we show that the related patterns of wing shape variation are not identical, supporting the view that the underlying developmental processes are to a certain extent different.

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