Population structure in Daphnia obtusa: quantitative genetic and allozymic variation

Genetics. 1993 Oct;135(2):367-74. doi: 10.1093/genetics/135.2.367.


Quantitative genetic analyses for body size and for life history characters within and among populations of Daphnia obtusa reveal substantial genetic variance at both hierarchical levels for all traits measured. Simultaneous allozymic analysis on the same population samples indicate a moderate degree of differentiation: GST = 0.28. No associations between electrophoretic genotype and phenotypic characters were found, providing support for the null hypothesis that the allozymic variants are effectively neutral. Therefore, GST can be used as the null hypothesis that neutral phenotypic evolution within populations led to the observed differentiation for the quantitative traits, which I call QST. The results of this study provide evidence that natural selection has promoted diversification for body size among populations, and has impeded diversification for relative fitness. Analyses of population differentiation for clutch size, age at reproduction, and growth rate indicate that neutral phenotypic evolution cannot be excluded as the cause.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Analysis of Variance
  • Animals
  • Daphnia / genetics*
  • Electrophoresis, Starch Gel
  • Gene Frequency
  • Genetic Variation*
  • Genotype
  • Isoenzymes / analysis*
  • Isoenzymes / genetics


  • Isoenzymes