A genética da adaptação humana: mudanças bruscas e suaves e a adaptação poligênica

quarta-feira, julho 21, 2010

Current Biology

Volume 20, Issue 4, 23 February 2010, Pages R208-R215

The Genetics of Human Adaptation: Hard Sweeps, Soft Sweeps, and Polygenic Adaptation

Jonathan K. Pritchard1, 2, , , Joseph K. Pickrell1 and Graham Coop3

1 Department of Human Genetics, The University of Chicago, Room 507, 929 E. 58th St, Chicago, IL 60637, USA

2 Howard Hughes Medical Institute, The University of Chicago, Room 507, 929 E. 58th St, Chicago, IL 60637, USA

3 Section of Evolution and Ecology and Center for Population Biology, University of California, Davis, Room 2320 Storer Hall, One Shields Avenue, Davis, CA 95616, USA

Available online 22 February 2010. 


There has long been interest in understanding the genetic basis of human adaptation. To what extent are phenotypic differences among human populations driven by natural selection? With the recent arrival of large genome-wide data sets on human variation, there is now unprecedented opportunity for progress on this type of question. Several lines of evidence argue for an important role of positive selection in shaping human variation and differences among populations. These include studies of comparative morphology and physiology, as well as population genetic studies of candidate loci and genome-wide data. However, the data also suggest that it is unusual for strong selection to drive new mutations rapidly to fixation in particular populations (the ‘hard sweep’ model). We argue, instead, for alternatives to the hard sweep model: in particular, polygenic adaptation could allow rapid adaptation while not producing classical signatures of selective sweeps. We close by discussing some of the likely opportunities for progress in the field.


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