Great new paper just out in Molecular Ecology. This paper, the first from Yang’s Post-Doc in Lund, used genome wide markers to infer the demographic history of gene flow between the different wall lizard lineages. The paper shows that about 3% of the genome has moved from the Tuscan lineage into the Southern Alps lineage. Interestingly, this asymmetric gene flow is more recent than the secondary contact itself. Indeed, the sexually selected characters appear to have originated within the Italian lineage quite recently and then spread northwards, eventually reaching the Ligurian coast and the contact zone with the lizards from western Europe, where they continued to give males a competitive advantage. The next steps are to figure out how this suite of characters arose in the first place, how the characters are kept together as they introgress, and what – if anything – that limits their spread across the landscape. Check out the full paper below and a more detailed description on our work on this topic to date on the blog post page.
Yang, W., While, G.M., Laakkonen, H., Sacchi, R., Zuffi, M., Scali, S., Salvi, D. and Uller, T. (in press) Genomic evidence for asymmetric introgression by sexual selection in the common wall lizard. Molecular Ecology.