The Genomic Architecture of a Rapid Island Radiation: Recombination Rate Variation, Chromosome Structure, and Genome Assembly of the Hawaiian Cricket Laupala

Genetics. 2018 Aug;209(4):1329-1344. doi: 10.1534/genetics.118.300894. Epub 2018 Jun 6.


Phenotypic evolution and speciation depend on recombination in many ways. Within populations, recombination can promote adaptation by bringing together favorable mutations and decoupling beneficial and deleterious alleles. As populations diverge, crossing over can give rise to maladapted recombinants and impede or reverse diversification. Suppressed recombination due to genomic rearrangements, modifier alleles, and intrinsic chromosomal properties may offer a shield against maladaptive gene flow eroding coadapted gene complexes. Both theoretical and empirical results support this relationship. However, little is known about this relationship in the context of behavioral isolation, where coevolving signals and preferences are the major hybridization barrier. Here we examine the genomic architecture of recently diverged, sexually isolated Hawaiian swordtail crickets (Laupala). We assemble a de novo genome and generate three dense linkage maps from interspecies crosses. In line with expectations based on the species' recent divergence and successful interbreeding in the laboratory, the linkage maps are highly collinear and show no evidence for large-scale chromosomal rearrangements. Next, the maps were used to anchor the assembly to pseudomolecules and estimate recombination rates across the genome to test the hypothesis that loci involved in behavioral isolation (song and preference divergence) are in regions of low interspecific recombination. Contrary to our expectations, the genomic region where a male song and female preference QTL colocalize is not associated with particularly low recombination rates. This study provides important novel genomic resources for an emerging evolutionary genetics model system and suggests that trait-preference coevolution is not necessarily facilitated by locally suppressed recombination.

Keywords: chromosomal rearrangements; crickets; genome; recombination; sexual selection; speciation.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Adaptation, Biological
  • Animals
  • Chromosome Mapping / methods*
  • Chromosomes, Insect / genetics*
  • Female
  • Gene Flow
  • Genetic Linkage
  • Genetic Speciation
  • Gryllidae / classification
  • Gryllidae / genetics
  • Gryllidae / radiation effects*
  • Male
  • Mutation
  • Phenotype
  • Quantitative Trait Loci
  • Recombination, Genetic / radiation effects
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA / methods*