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Title: Universal scaling rules predict evolutionary patterns of myogenesis in species with indeterminate growth
Authors: Johnston, Ian Alistair
Kristjansson, Bjarni K.
Paxton, Charles G. M.
Vieira-Johnston, Vera Lucia Almeida
MacQueen, Daniel John
Bell, Michael A.
Keywords: Parallel evolution
Muscle fibres
Threespine stickleback
Arctic charr
Scaling laws
QH301 Biology
Issue Date: 7-Jun-2012
Citation: Johnston , I A , Kristjansson , B K , Paxton , C G M , Vieira-Johnston , V L A , MacQueen , D J & Bell , M A 2012 , ' Universal scaling rules predict evolutionary patterns of myogenesis in species with indeterminate growth ' Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences , vol 279 , no. 1736 , pp. 2255-2261 . , 10.1098/rspb.2011.2536
Abstract: Intraspecific phenotypic variation is ubiquitous and often associated with resource exploitation in emerging habitats. For example, reduced body size has evolved repeatedly in Arctic charr (Salvelinus alpinus L.) and threespine stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus L.) across post-glacial habitats of the Northern Hemisphere. Exploiting these models, we examined how body size and myogenesis evolve with respect to the 'optimum fibre size hypothesis', which predicts that selection acts to minimize energetic costs associated with ionic homeostasis by optimizing muscle fibre production during development. In eight dwarf Icelandic Arctic charr populations, the ultimate production of fast-twitch muscle fibres (FN(max)) was only 39.5 and 15.5 per cent of that in large-bodied natural and aquaculture populations, respectively. Consequently, average fibre diameter (FD) scaled with a mass exponent of 0.19, paralleling the relaxation of diffusional constraints associated with mass-specific metabolic rate scaling. Similar reductions in FN(max) were observed for stickleback, including a small-bodied Alaskan population derived from a larger-bodied oceanic stock over a decadal timescale. The results suggest that in species showing indeterminate growth, body size evolution is accompanied by strong selection for fibre size optimization, theoretically allowing resources saved from ionic homeostasis to be allocated to other traits affecting fitness, including reproduction. Gene flow between small- and large-bodied populations residing in sympatry may counteract the evolution of this trait.
Version: Publisher PDF
Status: Peer reviewed
ISSN: 0962-8452
Type: Journal article
Rights: This journal is (c) 2012 The Royal Society. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Appears in Collections:University of St Andrews Research
Biology Research
Mathematics & Statistics Research
Centre for Research into Ecological & Environmental Modelling (CREEM) Research
St Andrews Sustainablity Institute Research
Scottish Oceans Institute Research

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