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Microsatellite length polymorphisms associated with dispersal-related agonistic onset in male wild house mice (Mus musculus domesticus)


Krackow, Sven; König, Barbara (2008). Microsatellite length polymorphisms associated with dispersal-related agonistic onset in male wild house mice (Mus musculus domesticus). Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, 62(5):813-820.

Abstract

Dispersal propensity, reflecting one of the most decisive mammalian life history traits, has been suggested to vary heritably and to locally adapt to prevailing dispersal conditions in wild house mouse populations. Because individual dispersal propensity highly significantly covaries with the developmental timing of the onset of agonistic interactions between littermate brothers, we used agonistic onset as an endophenotype to explore the potential genetic basis of dispersal-related behavioral variation in male house mice. We found significant covariation of microsatellite marker compositions with the probability of fraternal pairs to exhibit agonistic relationships before the age of 2 months. In particular, the presence of two alleles associated with a serotonin transporter protein gene (Slc6a4) and a testosterone dehydrogenase gene (Cyp3a11), respectively, strongly covaried with the probability of early agonistic onset. These results are congruent with recent findings of microsatellite length polymorphisms marking regulatory variation of gene expression that is relevant for social behavior, including dispersal propensity development, in other mammals. Genetic variability for ontogenetic timing of agonistic onset would be in agreement with genotypic differentiation of the dispersive behavioral syndrome in natural populations that could lead to local adaptation.

Abstract

Dispersal propensity, reflecting one of the most decisive mammalian life history traits, has been suggested to vary heritably and to locally adapt to prevailing dispersal conditions in wild house mouse populations. Because individual dispersal propensity highly significantly covaries with the developmental timing of the onset of agonistic interactions between littermate brothers, we used agonistic onset as an endophenotype to explore the potential genetic basis of dispersal-related behavioral variation in male house mice. We found significant covariation of microsatellite marker compositions with the probability of fraternal pairs to exhibit agonistic relationships before the age of 2 months. In particular, the presence of two alleles associated with a serotonin transporter protein gene (Slc6a4) and a testosterone dehydrogenase gene (Cyp3a11), respectively, strongly covaried with the probability of early agonistic onset. These results are congruent with recent findings of microsatellite length polymorphisms marking regulatory variation of gene expression that is relevant for social behavior, including dispersal propensity development, in other mammals. Genetic variability for ontogenetic timing of agonistic onset would be in agreement with genotypic differentiation of the dispersive behavioral syndrome in natural populations that could lead to local adaptation.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Evolutionary Biology and Environmental Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
590 Animals (Zoology)
Uncontrolled Keywords:Dispersive behavioral syndrome; Serotonin transporter protein; Slc6a4; Steroid inducible cytochrome P450; Cyp3a11
Language:English
Date:2008
Deposited On:28 Mar 2008 15:14
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 12:22
Publisher:Springer
ISSN:0340-5443
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1007/s00265-007-0507-y

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