Science 7 March 2014:
Vol. 343 no. 6175 pp. 1148-1151

A Single Gene Affects Both Ecological Divergence and Mate Choice in <em>Drosophila</em>

Henry Chung, David W. Loehlin, Héloïse D. Dufour, Kathy Vacarro, Jocelyn G. Millar, Sean B. Carroll | 1 Comments

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"In flies, ecological and social niche construction can be linked to molecular-level cause and effect at the cellular and organismal levels via nutrient-dependent changes in mitochondrial tRNA and a nuclear-encoded tRNA synthetase. The enzyme enables attachment of an appropriate amino acid, which facilitates the reaction required for efficient and accurate protein synthesis (Meiklejohn et al., 2013)." -- Kohl (2013) Nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled adaptive evolution: a model.

Chung et al (2014)extend the concept of nutrient-dependent pheromone-controlled epigenetically-effected alternative splicings of pre-mRNA from our section on molecular epigenetics in a 1996 Hormones and Behavior review article. Elekonich and Robinson (2000)already did that for insects before Elekonich and Roberts (2005) used the conserved molecular mechanisms approach in an extension to "Honey bees as a model for understanding mechanisms of life history transitions."

Someone else may help others to understand the experimental evidence from this study in the context of mutation-initiated natural selection, if it does not fully support the paradigm shift to a model of ecological variation, natural selection for food, and metabolism of nutrients to species-specific pheromones that control the physiology of reproduction.

However, in the context of ecological adaptations I think this experimental evidence establishes the fact that "Olfaction and odor receptors provide a clear evolutionary trail that can be followed from unicellular organisms to insects to humans." Kohl (2012)

Submitted on Fri, 02/14/2014 - 04:06