In the practice of resource management conservation, it is common to introduce new members into small inbred populations in order to increase genetic diversity and reduce the negative effects of inbreeding. Although fitness often increases in the F1 generation immediately following intrapopulation hybridization, few studies have focused on the long-term fitness of such populations. The model organisms Drosophila melanogaster and D. simulans were used to investigate if heterosis, an increase in the fitness in the hybrid population, or outbreeding depression, a decline in the fitness in the hybrid population, occurs over an eight generation period. At each generation, a series of fitness related assays were performed to assess relative fitness. Results of this study were mixed. At best, only some hybridized populations showed slightly higher, but often nonsignificant increases in fitness, never in more than one assay. The lack of consistent strong persistent heterosis suggests that conservation efforts such as habitat preservation maybe be a better use of effort and money for assisting endangered species.
|Advisor:||Carter, Ashley J.R.|
|School:||California State University, Long Beach|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||MAI 53/01M(E), Masters Abstracts International|
|Keywords:||Biology management, Conservation, Fluctuating assymetry, Heterosis, Hybridization, Outbreeding depression|
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