Location of Repository

Epigenomic plasticity within populations: its evolutionary significance and potential

By Louise Janna Johnson and Penelope Jane Tricker

Abstract

Epigenetics has progressed rapidly from an obscure quirk of\ud heredity into a data-heavy ‘omic’ science. Our understanding\ud of the molecular mechanisms of epigenomic regulation, and\ud the extent of its importance in nature, are far from complete,\ud but in spite of such drawbacks, population-level studies\ud are extremely valuable: epigenomic regulation is involved in\ud several processes central to evolutionary biology including\ud phenotypic plasticity, evolvability and the mediation of\ud intragenomic conflicts. The first studies of epigenomic\ud variation within populations suggest high levels of phenotypically relevant variation, with the patterns of epigenetic regulation varying between individuals and genome regions as well as with environment. Epigenetic mechanisms appear to function primarily as genome defences, but result in the maintenance of plasticity together with a degree of buffering of developmental programmes; periodic breakdown of epigenetic buffering could potentially cause variation in rates of phenotypic evolution

Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
Year: 2010
OAI identifier: oai:centaur.reading.ac.uk:15925
Download PDF:
Sorry, we are unable to provide the full text but you may find it at the following location(s):
  • http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/hdy.... (external link)
  • Suggested articles


    To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.