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Genetic introgression among differentiated clades is lower among clades exhibiting different parity modes

  • A Correction to this article was published on 03 May 2019


Mechanisms leading to sympatric speciation are diverse and may build up reproductive isolation. Reproductive isolation among differentiated clades may exist due to genetic incompatibilities, sexual selection, differences in parity mode, reduced post-zygotic survival or reproductive success of hybrids. Here, we test whether differences in parity mode lead to reproductive isolation by investigating introgression in Zootoca vivipara, a lizard species exhibiting oviparous and viviparous reproduction. We measured introgression in transects spanning different viviparous clades, different oviparous subclades, transects containing oviparous and viviparous clades, and transects within the same subclade (control transects). Introgression in transects spanning oviparous and viviparous clades was one order of magnitude smaller than transects spanning the same reproductive mode and no statistical differences existed between transects spanning the same reproductive mode and control transects. Among types of transects, no significant differences existed in genetic and geographic distances, nor number of detected alleles. Moreover, hybrids were detected in all types of transects, showing that parity mode alone does not necessarily lead to complete reproductive isolation, which suggests that reinforcement may play an important role. The evolution of different parity modes together with reinforcement may thus promote reproductive isolation and rapid speciation, potentially explaining why only six of the almost 40,000 vertebrates belonging to groups consisting of viviparous and oviparous species exhibit bimodal reproduction.

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Change history

  • 03 May 2019

    The original version of this Article contained an error in the spelling of the author Y. Surget-Groba, which was incorrectly given as J. Surget-Groba. This has now been corrected in both the PDF and HTML versions of the Article.


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J.L.H. was supported by a Spanish MINECO postdoc grant IJCI-2015-23618. D.L. was supported by the German Academic Exchange Service. Project funds were provided by the Swiss National Science Foundation (PPOOP3_128375, PP00P3_152929/1 to P.S.F.) and the Spanish Ministry of Education and Science (CGL2008-01522, CGL2012-32459, CGL2016-76918 to P.S.F.). A special thank goes to María Luisa Peláez Aller and Teresa Suárez for help with the molecular analyses, Werner Mayer and the Central Research Laboratories of the Natural History Museum Vienna for help with sample collection, and Victoria Gonzalez Cascon (GIS Laboratory of the MNCN) who helped elaborating Figure 1.

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