Recent selection for self-compatibility in a population of Leavenworthia alabamica

Adam C. Herman, Daniel J. Schoen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


The evolution of self-compatibility (SC) is the first step in the evolutionary transition in plants from outcrossing enforced by self-incompatibility (SI) to self-fertilization. In the Brassicaceae, SI is controlled by alleles of two tightly linked genes at the S-locus. Despite permitting inbreeding, mutations at the S-locus leading to SC may be selected if they provide reproductive assurance and/or gain a transmission advantage in a population when SC plants self- and outcross. Positive selection can leave a genomic signature in the regions physically linked to the focus of selection when selection has occurred recently. From an SC population of Leavenworthia alabamica with a known nonfunctional mutation at the S-locus, we collected sequence data from a ∼690 Kb region surrounding the S-locus, as well as from regions not linked to the S-locus. To test for recent positive selection acting at the S-locus, we examined polymorphism and the site-frequency spectra. Using forward simulations, we demonstrate that recent selection of the strength expected for SC at a locus formerly under balancing selection can generate patterns similar to those seen in our empirical data.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1212-1224
Number of pages13
JournalEvolution; international journal of organic evolution
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1 2016


  • Leavenworthia
  • S-locus
  • positive selection
  • selective sweep
  • self-compatibility


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