Replicated landscape genomics identifies evidence of local adaptation to urbanization in wood frogs

Journal of Heredity
By: , and 



Native species that persist in urban environments may benefit from local adaptation to novel selection factors. We used double-digest restriction-side associated DNA (RAD) sequencing to evaluate shifts in genome-wide genetic diversity and investigate the presence of parallel evolution associated with urban-specific selection factors in wood frogs (Lithobates sylvaticus). Our replicated paired study design involved 12 individuals from each of 4 rural and urban populations to improve our confidence that detected signals of selection are indeed associated with urbanization. Genetic diversity measures were less for urban populations; however, the effect size was small, suggesting little biological consequence. Using an FST outlier approach, we identified 37 of 8344 genotyped single nucleotide polymorphisms with consistent evidence of directional selection across replicates. A genome-wide association study analysis detected modest support for an association between environment type and 12 of the 37 FST outlier loci. Discriminant analysis of principal components using the 37 FST outlier loci produced correct reassignment for 87.5% of rural samples and 93.8% of urban samples. Eighteen of the 37 FST outlier loci mapped to the American bullfrog (Rana [Lithobates] catesbeiana) genome, although none were in coding regions. This evidence of parallel evolution to urban environments provides a powerful example of the ability of urban landscapes to direct evolutionary processes.

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Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Replicated landscape genomics identifies evidence of local adaptation to urbanization in wood frogs
Series title Journal of Heredity
DOI 10.1093/jhered/esz041
Volume 110
Issue 6
Year Published 2019
Language English
Publisher Oxford Academic
Contributing office(s) Coop Res Unit Leetown
Description 13 p.
First page 707
Last page 719
Country United States
State Maine
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