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Birds with high lifetime reproductive success experience increased telomere loss
Univ Warsaw, Ctr New Technol, Banacha 2c, PL-02097 Warsaw, Poland;Jagiellonian Univ, Inst Environm Sci, Gronostajowa 7, PL-30387 Krakow, Poland.
Jagiellonian Univ, Inst Environm Sci, Gronostajowa 7, PL-30387 Krakow, Poland.
Jagiellonian Univ, Inst Environm Sci, Gronostajowa 7, PL-30387 Krakow, Poland.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Ecology and Genetics, Animal ecology.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6566-2863
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2019 (English)In: Biology Letters, ISSN 1744-9561, E-ISSN 1744-957X, Vol. 15, no 1, article id 20180637Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Lifetime reproductive success (LRS) is what counts in terms of evolution, but investments in reproduction entail costs for an organism. The idea that telomere dynamics may be shaped in response to such costs is already established; however, we still lack information on whether this relation translates to overall fitness. Here, we quantified LRS (number of fledged young) and longitudinal telomere dynamics of small passerine birds-the blue tits (Cyanistes caeruleus). We found that individual telomere erosion rate was positively associated with lifetime fledgling number. Birds with more fledged young experienced increased telomere attrition. We show that telomere attrition rate, but not telomere length, is related to individual fitness and suggest that telomere dynamics may underlie reproductive costs experienced by animals as a consequence of prioritizing their lifetime fitness. This is the first study, to our knowledge, to provide evidence that more pronounced telomere erosion is associated with higher fitness gain.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
ROYAL SOC , 2019. Vol. 15, no 1, article id 20180637
Keywords [en]
cost of reproduction, telomere shortening, ageing, life-history, regression to the mean
National Category
Evolutionary Biology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-383035DOI: 10.1098/rsbl.2018.0637ISI: 000465402800002PubMedID: 30958221OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-383035DiVA, id: diva2:1314323
Available from: 2019-05-08 Created: 2019-05-08 Last updated: 2019-05-08Bibliographically approved

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