Manfredini Fabio, Lucas Christophe, Nicolas Michael, Keller Laurent, Shoemaker Dewayne, Grozinger Christina M. (2014), Molecular and social regulation of worker division of labour in fire ants, in MOLECULAR ECOLOGY
, 23(3), 660-672.
Nipitwattanaphon Mingkwan, Wang John, Dijkstra Michiel B., Keller Laurent (2013), A simple genetic basis for complex social behaviour mediates widespread gene expression differences, in Molecular Ecology
, 22(14), 3797-3813.
Libbrecht, Oxley, Kronauer, Keller (2013), Ant genomics sheds light on the molecular regulation of social organization, in Genome Biology
Privman Eyal, Wurm Yannick, Keller Laurent (2013), Duplication and concerted evolution in a master sex determiner under balancing selection, in PROCEEDINGS OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY B-BIOLOGICAL SCIENCES
, 280(1758), 20122968.
Hunt Brendan G., Ometto Lino, Keller Laurent, Goodisman Michael A D (2013), Evolution at two levels in fire ants: The relationship between patterns of gene expression and protein sequence evolution, in Molecular Biology and Evolution
, 30(2), 263-271.
Simola Daniel F., Wissler Lothar, Donahue Greg, Waterhouse Robert M., Helmkampf Martin, Roux Julien, Nygaard Sanne, Glastad Karl M., Hagen Darren E., Viljakainen Lumi, Reese Justin T., Hunt Brendan G., Graur Dan, Elhaik Eran, Kriventseva Evgenia V., Wen Jiayu, Parker Brian J., Cash Elizabeth I., Privman Eyal, Childers Christopher P., Muñoz-Torres Mónica C., Boomsma Jacobus J., Bornberg-Bauer Erich G., Currie Cameron R., Elsik Christine G. (2013), Social insect genomes exhibit dramatic evolution in gene composition and regulation while preserving regulatory features linked to sociality, in Genome Research
, 23(8), 1235-1247.
Manfredini Fabio, Riba-Grognuz Oksana, Wurm Yannick, Keller Laurent, Shoemaker DeWayne, Grozinger Christina M. (2013), Sociogenomics of Cooperation and Conflict during Colony Founding in the Fire Ant Solenopsis invicta, in PLOS GENETICS
, 9(8), e1003633.
LeBoeuf Adria C, Benton Richard, Keller Laurent (2013), The molecular basis of social behavior: models, methods and advances., in Current opinion in neurobiology
, 23(1), 3-10.
Corona Miguel A., Libbrecht Romain, Wurm Yannick, Riba-Grognuz Oksana, Studer Romain A., Keller Laurent (2013), Vitellogenin Underwent Subfunctionalization to Acquire Caste and Behavioral Specific Expression in the Harvester Ant Pogonomyrmex barbatus, in PLoS Genetics
, 9(8), e1003730.
Ometto L, Ross KG, Shoemaker D, Keller L (2012), Disruption of gene expression in hybrids of the fire ants Solenopsis invicta and Solenopsis richteri, in MOLECULAR ECOLOGY
, 21(10), 2488-2501.
Ometto L, Shoemaker D, Ross KG, Keller L (2011), Evolution of Gene Expression in Fire Ants: The Effects of Developmental Stage, Caste, and Species, in MOLECULAR BIOLOGY AND EVOLUTION
, 28(4), 1381-1392.
Hunt BG, Ometto L, Wurm Y, Shoemaker D, Yi SV, Keller L, Goodisman MAD (2011), Relaxed selection is a precursor to the evolution of phenotypic plasticity, in PROCEEDINGS OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
, 108(38), 15936-15941.
Y. Wurm, J. Wang, O. Riba-Grognuz, M. Corona, S. Nygaard, B.G. Hunt, K.K. Ingram, L. Falquet, M. Nipitwattanaphon, D. Gotzek, M.B. Dijkstra, J. Oettler, F. Comtesse, C.J. Shih, W.J. Wu, C.C. Yang, J. Thomas, E. Beaudoing, S. Pradervand, V. Flegel, E.D. Cook, R. Fabbretti, H. Stockinger, L. Long, W.G. Farmerie (2011), The genome of the fire ant Solenopsis invicta., in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
, 108(14), 5679-5684.
O. Riba-Grognuz, L. Keller, L. Falquet, I. Xenarios, Y. Wurm, Visualization and quality assessment of de novo genome assemblies, in Bioinformatics
The proposed project will employ the new method of admixture mapping to conduct detailed studies of gene and trait associations in a hybrid zone between two invasive fire ant species in the southern U.S.A., Solenopsis invicta and S. richteri. Admixture mapping takes advantage of the presence of highly admixed (introgressed) populations to survey nuclear genomes both for regions under selection in foreign genomic backgrounds and for regions influencing the development of species-specific phenotypic or ecological traits. Loci with variants that are relatively under- or over-represented in a foreign background mark genes subject to selection in hybrids; negatively selected loci may contribute to the process of speciation or to the maintenance of species differences, whereas positively selected loci may underlie important general adaptations. When such excess ancestry is shown to be associated with variation at known traits, the genetic architecture underlying such variation is revealed, thus informing the genetic basis of phenotypic novelties involved in anagenesis and speciation. Thus, admixture mapping is a useful tool for revealing gene numbers, locations, and effect sizes for a diversity of evolutionarily important traits involved in speciation and adaptation.The five specific objectives of the proposed work are to: 1) Collect and characterize samples for admixture mapping from two localities in the large S. invicta / S. richteri hybrid zone in the U.S.A.; 2) Develop several hundred microsatellite and SNP markers with large allele frequency differentials between the parental species; 3) Conduct admixture mapping on hybrids to identify loci under negative or positive selection; 4) Conduct admixture mapping on hybrids to identify loci affecting morphological traits that distinguish the two species; and 5) Construct a genetic map from hybrid males to reveal linkage relationships of the markers. The availability of relevant genetic resources for fire ants, combined with extensive background knowledge of their biology and history of hybridization, will provide unprecedented power to address central issues pertaining to the genetic bases of species differences and speciation, the molecular basis of adaptation, and the origin of morphological and ecological novelty in this evolutionarily and economically significant group. The long-term goal is to integrate results from the proposed research with previous genetic, ecological, behavioral, and phylogenetic information to produce new insights into the evolutionary diversification and ecological success of fire ants.