Eco-evolutionary dynamics in changing environments: Integrating theory with data

Fouqueau L, Polechova J. 2024. Eco-evolutionary dynamics in changing environments: Integrating theory with data. Journal of evolutionary biology. 37(6), 579–587.

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Abstract
In this special issue, we aim to bring together eco-evolutionary studies that emphasise the feedback between population regulation and evolution of traits and their genetic basis, with research focused on feedback between evolution of species’ interactions and community dynamics. In particular, we focus on the importance of the eco-evolutionary feedback in spatially structured populations. Despite this being an expanding area of research, the integration of evolution (of focal species’ traits as well as of species’ interactions) with population regulation and community dynamics remains limited. Yet, it may substantially improve our understanding of adaptation dynamics in changing environments, with implications for both population and community resilience—and ultimately enable a deeper insight into the fundamental principles shaping patterns of species’ diversity. With the technological advances including modern molecular genetic methods, it is now plausible to test novel predictions that include the genetics of complex traits associated with a focal-species’ characteristics or community structure (community traits). We find the following directions particularly interesting: (1) What factors determine whether evolution stabilizes or destabilizes ecological dynamics? In particular, how do the predictions depend on ecological factors such as network structure, as well as on evolutionary factors such as within-species variance, frequency of recombination, and genetic architecture? How does the evolution of the genetic basis affect the dynamics? (2) Spatial and temporal variability influence the above processes and create non-trivial feedbacks; a notable example is the maintenance of genetic variance and its effect on ecological dynamics. How do the predictions change when spatial structure (with heterogeneous selection, local population dynamics, and dispersal), temporally changing environment (directional or fluctuating), and their interaction are taken into account? (3) When does selection favor recurrent introgression in the context of speciation and under rapidly changing conditions, where we expect both increased demographic fluctuations and more accidental mixing due to range shifts, as well as more shared adaptations? How does this depend on the current genetic architecture and its evolution? To determine causality, a testable and sufficiently complex theory, as well as clever experimental designs, are necessary, along with a good understanding of organismal, population, and community biology.
Publishing Year
Date Published
2024-06-28
Journal Title
Journal of evolutionary biology
Acknowledgement
This research was funded by the Austrian Science Fund (FWF), project doi: 10.55776/P32896, Institutional Identifier: 501100002428, grant number: P32896 and L.F. acknowledges the support of the NOMIS-ISTA Fellowship Program. We would like to thank Nick Barton, Roger Butlin, Stuart Baird, Patrik Nosil, and Jason Sexton for their insightful comments on the earlier drafts, and to John Carchrae for his valuable contribution in refining phrasing and enhancing clarity. For open access purposes, the author has applied a CC BY public copyright license to any author-accepted manuscript version arising from this submission.
Volume
37
Issue
6
Page
579-587
eISSN
IST-REx-ID

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Fouqueau L, Polechova J. Eco-evolutionary dynamics in changing environments: Integrating theory with data. Journal of evolutionary biology. 2024;37(6):579-587. doi:10.1093/jeb/voae067
Fouqueau, L., & Polechova, J. (2024). Eco-evolutionary dynamics in changing environments: Integrating theory with data. Journal of Evolutionary Biology. Oxford University Press. https://doi.org/10.1093/jeb/voae067
Fouqueau, Louise, and Jitka Polechova. “Eco-Evolutionary Dynamics in Changing Environments: Integrating Theory with Data.” Journal of Evolutionary Biology. Oxford University Press, 2024. https://doi.org/10.1093/jeb/voae067.
L. Fouqueau and J. Polechova, “Eco-evolutionary dynamics in changing environments: Integrating theory with data,” Journal of evolutionary biology, vol. 37, no. 6. Oxford University Press, pp. 579–587, 2024.
Fouqueau L, Polechova J. 2024. Eco-evolutionary dynamics in changing environments: Integrating theory with data. Journal of evolutionary biology. 37(6), 579–587.
Fouqueau, Louise, and Jitka Polechova. “Eco-Evolutionary Dynamics in Changing Environments: Integrating Theory with Data.” Journal of Evolutionary Biology, vol. 37, no. 6, Oxford University Press, 2024, pp. 579–87, doi:10.1093/jeb/voae067.
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