Limited Evidence for Parallel Evolution Among Desert-Adapted Peromyscus Deer Mice.

Academic Article


  • Warming climate and increasing desertification urge the identification of genes involved in heat and dehydration tolerance to better inform and target biodiversity conservation efforts. Comparisons among extant desert-adapted species can highlight parallel or convergent patterns of genome evolution through the identification of shared signatures of selection. We generate a chromosome-level genome assembly for the canyon mouse (Peromyscus crinitus) and test for a signature of parallel evolution by comparing signatures of selective sweeps across population-level genomic resequencing data from another congeneric desert specialist (Peromyscus eremicus) and a widely distributed habitat generalist (Peromyscus maniculatus), that may be locally adapted to arid conditions. We identify few shared candidate loci involved in desert adaptation and do not find support for a shared pattern of parallel evolution. Instead, we hypothesize divergent molecular mechanisms of desert adaptation among deer mice, potentially tied to species-specific historical demography, which may limit or enhance adaptation. We identify a number of candidate loci experiencing selective sweeps in the P. crinitus genome that are implicated in osmoregulation (Trypsin, Prostasin) and metabolic tuning (Kallikrein, eIF2-alpha kinase GCN2, APPL1/2), which may be important for accommodating hot and dry environmental conditions.
  • Authors

  • Colella, Jocelyn P
  • Tigano, Anna
  • Dudchenko, Olga
  • Omer, Arina D
  • Khan, Ruqayya
  • Bochkov, Ivan D
  • Aiden, Erez L
  • MacManes, Matthew
  • Status

    Publication Date

  • May 24, 2021
  • Published In


  • Adaptation, Physiological
  • Animals
  • Climate
  • Genome
  • Peromyscus
  • Sequence Analysis, DNA
  • dehydration
  • desert
  • parallel evolution
  • thermoregulation
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Start Page

  • 286
  • End Page

  • 302
  • Volume

  • 112
  • Issue

  • 3