Genome-wide variation in the human and fruitfly: a comparison

Curr Opin Genet Dev. 2001 Dec;11(6):627-34. doi: 10.1016/s0959-437x(00)00245-8.


Average levels of nucleotide diversity are ten-fold lower in humans than in the fruitfly, Drosophila melanogaster. Despite this difference, apparently as a result of a lower population size, patterns of genomic diversity are strikingly similar in being correlated with local rates of recombination, and influenced by similar interactions between positive natural selection and recombination. Both species also show lower levels of variation on average in non-African compared to African populations, reflecting a similar evolutionary history and perhaps both natural selection and founder effects in new environments.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Alleles
  • Animals
  • Biological Evolution
  • Chromosomes / genetics
  • Crosses, Genetic
  • Drosophila melanogaster / genetics*
  • Drosophila melanogaster / physiology
  • Gene Conversion
  • Genetic Variation*
  • Genetics, Population
  • Genome
  • Humans
  • Linkage Disequilibrium
  • Mutation
  • Recombination, Genetic*
  • Selection, Genetic*