Evol Ecol Res 4: 317-350 (2002)     Full PDF if your library subscribes.

Symbiotic sympatric speciation through interaction-driven phenotype differentiation

Kunihiko Kaneko1* and Tetsuya Yomo2

1Department of Pure and Applied Sciences, University of Tokyo, Komaba, Meguro-ku, Tokyo 153 and 2Department of Biotechnology, Faculty of Engineering, Osaka University, 2-1 Suita, Osaka 565, Japan

Author to whom all correspondence should be addressed.
e-mail: kaneko@complex.c.u-tokyo.ac.jp


A mechanism of genetic diversification and reproductive isolation is presented based on the interaction-induced diversification of phenotypes. First, phenotypes of individuals with identical genotypes split into a few groups, according to instability in the developmental dynamics associated with the interaction among individuals. Later, through competition for reproduction and mutational change of genes, the phenotypic differences are fixed to genes, until the groups (‘species’) are completely separated in terms of genes as well as phenotypes. In addition, we demonstrate that the proposed theory for speciation works also under sexual recombination and provides a basis for the evolution of mating preference. The relevance of the results to natural evolution are discussed, including incomplete penetrance in mutants and the change in flexibility in genotype–phenotype correspondence. Possible experiments are proposed to verify the theory presented.

Keywords: development, hybrid sterility, isologous diversification, mating preference, phenotypic plasticity, sympatric speciation.

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