Adaptive Role of Inversion Polymorphism of Drosophila subobscura in Lead Stressed Environment
Kurbalija Novičić, Zorana
Article (Published version)
MetadataShow full item record
Local adaptation to environmental stress at different levels of genetic polymorphism in various plants and animals has been documented through evolution of heavy metal tolerance. We used samples of Drosophila subobscura populations from two differently polluted environments to analyze the change of chromosomal inversion polymorphism as genetic marker during laboratory exposure to lead. Exposure to environmental contamination can affect the genetic content within a particular inversion and produce targets for selection in populations from different environments. The aims were to discover whether the inversion polymorphism is shaped by the local natural environments, and if lead as a selection pressure would cause adaptive divergence of two populations during the multigenerational laboratory experiment. The results showed that populations retain signatures from past contamination events, and that heavy metal pollution can cause adaptive changes in population. Differences in inversion polymorphism between the two populations increased over generations under lead contamination in the laboratory. The inversion polymorphism of population originating from the more polluted natural environment was more stable during the experiment, both under conditions with and without lead. Therefore, results showed that inversion polymorphism as a genetic marker reflects a strong signature of adaptation to the local environment, and that historical demographic events and selection are important for both prediction of evolutionary potential and long-term viability of natural populations.