Conflict over condition-dependent sex allocation can lead to mixed sex-determination systems

Bram Kuijper*, Ido Pen

*Bijbehorende auteur voor dit werk

OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review

5 Citaten (Scopus)
90 Downloads (Pure)


Theory suggests that genetic conflicts drive turnovers between sex-determining mechanisms, yet these studies only apply to cases where sex allocation is independent of environment or condition. Here, we model parent-offspring conflict in the presence of condition-dependent sex allocation, where the environment has sex-specific fitness consequences. Additionally, one sex is assumed to be more costly to produce than the other, which leads offspring to favor a sex ratio less biased toward the cheaper sex in comparison to the sex ratio favored by mothers. The scope for parent-offspring conflict depends on the relative frequency of both environments: when one environment is less common than the other, parent-offspring conflict can be reduced or even entirely absent, despite a biased population sex ratio. The model shows that conflict-driven invasions of condition-independent sex factors (e. g., sex chromosomes) result either in the loss of condition-dependent sex allocation, or, interestingly, lead to stable mixtures of condition-dependent and condition-independent sex factors. The latter outcome corresponds to empirical observations in which sex chromosomes are present in organisms with environment-dependent sex determination. Finally, conflict can also favor errors in environmental perception, potentially resulting in the loss of condition-dependent sex allocation without genetic changes to sex-determining loci.

Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)3229-3247
Aantal pagina's19
Nummer van het tijdschrift11
Vroegere onlinedatum20-okt-2014
StatusPublished - nov-2014

Citeer dit