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Research Article

Mutation and Evolutionary Rates in Adélie Penguins from the Antarctic

  • Craig D. Millar,

    Affiliation: Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution, School of Biological Sciences, University of Auckland, Auckland, New Zealand

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  • Andrew Dodd,

    Affiliation: Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution, Institute of Molecular BioSciences, Massey University, Auckland, New Zealand

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  • Jennifer Anderson,

    Affiliation: Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution, Institute of Molecular BioSciences, Massey University, Auckland, New Zealand

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  • Gillian C. Gibb,

    Affiliation: Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution, Institute of Molecular BioSciences, Massey University, Auckland, New Zealand

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  • Peter A. Ritchie,

    Affiliation: Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution, Institute of Molecular BioSciences, Massey University, Auckland, New Zealand

    Current address: School of Biological Sciences, Victoria University of Wellington, Wellington, New Zealand

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  • Carlo Baroni,

    Affiliations: Dipartmento Scienze della Terra, Università di Pisa, Pisa, Italy, Consiglio Nazionale Ricerche, Centro Studio Geologia Strutturale, Pisa, Italy

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  • Michael D. Woodhams,

    Affiliation: Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution, Institute of Fundamental Sciences, Massey University Palmerston North, Palmerston North, New Zealand

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  • Michael D. Hendy,

    Affiliation: Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution, Institute of Fundamental Sciences, Massey University Palmerston North, Palmerston North, New Zealand

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  • David M. Lambert mail

    d.lambert@griffith.edu.au

    Affiliation: Allan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution, Institute of Molecular BioSciences, Massey University, Auckland, New Zealand

    Current address: Griffith School of Environment and School of Biomolecular and Physical Sciences, Griffith University, Nathan, Australia

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  • Published: October 03, 2008
  • DOI: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1000209

Reader Comments (3)

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k is expected to be larger than u

Posted by RonW on 14 Oct 2008 at 18:58 GMT

The observation that the base-pair substitution rate is higher than the mutation rate is expected if some mutant alleles arise not as single events, but as premeiotic clusters giving rise to two or more identical genetic changes (see discussions of this topic in Woodruff et al. 2005. Genetica 125: 333-339; Woodruff and Zhang. 2008. Journal of Heredity doi:10.1093/jhered/esno58). With premeiotic clusters (c), k is not equal to u, but k is equal to cu. Hence, the results in this article suggest that the average size of a cluster in penguins is about 1.6.