Patterns of multiallelic polymorphism maintained by migration and selection

Theor Popul Biol. 2001 Jun;59(4):297-313. doi: 10.1006/tpbi.2001.1526.


Evolution at a multiallelic locus under the joint action of migration and viability selection is investigated. Generations are discrete and nonoverlapping. The monoecious, diploid population is subdivided into finitely many panmictic colonies that exchange adult migrants independently of genotype. The forward migration matrix is arbitrary, but time independent and ergodic (i.e., irreducible and aperiodic). Several examples of globally attracting multiallelic equilibria are presented. Migration can cause global fixation even if, without migration, there is a globally attracting multiallelic equilibrium in every colony. Migration can also cause the global fixation of an allele that, without migration, is eliminated in every colony. Without dominance, generically, the number of alleles present at equilibrium cannot exceed the number of colonies. Some general properties and examples of the Levene model are studied in detail. If in each colony there is either no dominance or, without migration, a globally attracting internal equilibrium, then there exists a globally attracting equilibrium with migration. Therefore, if an internal equilibrium exists, it is the global attractor.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Alleles
  • Animals
  • Emigration and Immigration*
  • Genes, Dominant
  • Genetic Variation
  • Humans
  • Models, Genetic
  • Polymorphism, Genetic* / genetics
  • Selection, Genetic*