Published on Fri Jun 25 2021

Dynamics and variability in the pleiotropic effects of adaptation in laboratory budding yeast populations

Bakerlee, C. W., Phillips, A. M., Nguyen Ba, A. N., Desai, M. M.

Evolutionary adaptation to a constant environment is driven by the accumulation of mutations. This can have a range of unrealized pleiotropic effects in other environments. These consequences of adaptation can influence the emergence of specialists or generalists.

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Abstract

Evolutionary adaptation to a constant environment is driven by the accumulation of mutations which can have a range of unrealized pleiotropic effects in other environments. These pleiotropic consequences of adaptation can influence the emergence of specialists or generalists, and are critical for evolution in temporally or spatially fluctuating environments. While many experiments have examined the pleiotropic effects of adaptation at a snapshot in time, very few have observed the dynamics by which these effects emerge and evolve. Here, we propagated hundreds of diploid and haploid laboratory budding yeast populations in each of three environments, and then assayed their fitness in multiple environments over 1000 generations of evolution. We find that replicate populations evolved in the same condition share common patterns of pleiotropic effects across other environments, which emerge within the first several hundred generations of evolution. However, we also find dynamic and environment-specific variability within these trends: variability in pleiotropic effects tends to increase over time, with the extent of variability depending on the evolution environment. These results suggest shifting and overlapping contributions of chance and contingency to the pleiotropic effects of adaptation, which could influence evolutionary trajectories in complex environments that fluctuate across space and time.