Exploring the genetics of aging in a wild passerine bird
2007 (English)In: American Naturalist, ISSN 0003-0147, E-ISSN 1537-5323, Vol. 170, no 4, 643-650 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Senescence is the decline in survival and reproduction as an organism ages and is known to occur in collared flycatchers Ficedula albicollis. We consider annual fitness (the estimated genetic contribution that an individual makes to next year’s gene pool) as a measure of age‐specific fitness. We apply a restricted maximum likelihood linear mixed‐model approach on 25 years of data on 3,844 male and 4,992 female collared flycatchers. Annual fitness had a significant additive genetic component (h2 of about 4%). Annual fitness declined at later ages in both sexes. Using a random regression animal model, we show that the observed age‐related phenotypic changes in annual fitness were not present on the additive genetic level, contrary to predictions of genetic hypotheses of senescence. Our study suggests that patterns of aging in the wild need to be interpreted with caution in terms of underlying genetics because they may be largely determined by environmental processes.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2007. Vol. 170, no 4, 643-650 p.
evolution, quantitative genetics, animal model, senescence, mutation.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-13324DOI: 10.1086/521241ISI: 000249307700016PubMedID: 17891742OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-13324DiVA: diva2:41094