Validation of outlier loci through replication in independent data sets
- Journal Article
Rights / licenseCreative Commons Attribution 4.0 International
Outlier detection and environmental association analysis are common methods to search for loci or genomic regions exhibiting signals of adaptation to environmental factors. However, a validation of outlier loci and corresponding allele distribution models through functional molecular biology or transplant/common garden experiments is rarely carried out. Here, we employ another method for validation, namely testing outlier loci in specifically designed, independent data sets. Previously, an outlier locus associated with three different habitat types had been detected in Arabis alpina. For the independent validation data set, we sampled 30 populations occurring in these three habitat types across five biogeographic regions of the Swiss Alps. The allele distribution model found in the original study could not be validated in the independent test data set: The outlier locus was no longer indicative of habitat‐mediated selection. We propose several potential causes of this failure of validation, of which unaccounted genetic structure and technical issues in the original data set used to detect the outlier locus were most probable. Thus, our study shows that validating outlier loci and allele distribution models in independent data sets is a helpful tool in ecological genomics which, in the case of positive validation, adds confidence to outlier loci and their association with environmental factors or, in the case of failure of validation, helps to explain inconsistencies. Show more
Journal / seriesEcology and Evolution
Pages / Article No.
SubjectAllele distribution model; Environmental association analysis; Genome scan; Natural selection; SNaPshot((R))
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