Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 552261
Title Plastic responses to novel environments are biased towards phenotype dimensions with high additive genetic variation
Author(s) Noble, Daniel W.A.; Radersma, Reinder; Uller, Tobias
Source Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America 116 (2019)27. - ISSN 0027-8424 - p. 13452 - 13461.
Department(s) Mathematical and Statistical Methods - Biometris
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2019
Keyword(s) Cryptic genetic - Evolvability - Phenotypic accommodation - Phenotypic plasticity - Variation

Environmentally induced phenotypes have been proposed to initiate and bias adaptive evolutionary change toward particular directions. The potential for this to happen depends in part on how well plastic responses are aligned with the additive genetic variance and covariance in traits. Using meta-analysis, we demonstrate that plastic responses to novel environments tend to occur along phenotype dimensions that harbor substantial amounts of additive genetic variation. This suggests that selection for or against environmentally induced phenotypes typically will be effective. One interpretation of the alignment between the direction of plasticity and the main axis of additive genetic variation is that developmental systems tend to respond to environmental novelty as they do to genetic mutation. This makes it challenging to distinguish if the direction of evolution is biased by plasticity or genetic “constraint.” Our results therefore highlight a need for new theoretical and empirical approaches to address the role of plasticity in evolution.

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