Heritable variation in courtship patterns in Drosophila melanogaster.
Bottom Line: We found heritable variation along the expected trajectory for courtship behaviors, including the tendency to initiate courtship and rate of progression through courtship, suggesting a genetic basis to male modulation of courtship behavior based on feedback from unrelated, outbred, and genetically identical females.We assessed the genetic basis of variation of the transition with the greatest heritability--from copulation to no engagement with the female--and identified variants in Serrate and Furin 1 as well as many other polymorphisms on the chromosome 3R associated with this transition.Our findings suggest that courtship is a highly dynamic behavior with both social and genetic inputs, and that males may play an important role in courtship initiation and duration.
Affiliation: Department of Biological Sciences, W. M. Keck Center for Behavioral Biology and Program in Genetics, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina 27695-7614.Show MeSH
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Mentions: The transition with the greatest heritable variation was “copulation” to “no engagement” (E to A, Table 3). To test whether we could identify specific loci that correspond with this transition, we performed a GWAS on this phenotype (Figure 5). Two intronic SNPs in Serrate (Ser) and Furin 1 (Fur1) passed a stringent Bonferroni correction (P = 6.97 × 10−9 and 9.89 × 10−9, respectively) for multiple tests, and 57 additional SNPs with P values ≤ 10−5 (Table S1) were associated with variation in this transition. In addition to the SNP in Ser with the strongest association, 18 of these top SNPs were located in Ser introns and regulatory elements.
Affiliation: Department of Biological Sciences, W. M. Keck Center for Behavioral Biology and Program in Genetics, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina 27695-7614.