Genetics of colouration in birds.

Details

Serval ID
serval:BIB_4D593B227308
Type
Article: article from journal or magazin.
Publication sub-type
Review (review): journal as complete as possible of one specific subject, written based on exhaustive analyses from published work.
Collection
Publications
Title
Genetics of colouration in birds.
Journal
Seminars in Cell and Developmental Biology
Author(s)
Roulin A., Ducrest A.L.
ISSN
1096-3634 (Electronic)
ISSN-L
1084-9521
Publication state
Published
Issued date
2013
Peer-reviewed
Oui
Volume
24
Number
6-7
Pages
594-608
Language
english
Abstract
Establishing the links between phenotype and genotype is of great importance for resolving key questions about the evolution, maintenance and adaptive function of phenotypic variation. Bird colouration is one of the most studied systems to investigate the role of natural and sexual selection in the evolution of phenotypic diversity. Given the recent advances in molecular tools that allow discovering genetic polymorphisms and measuring gene and protein expression levels, it is timely to review the literature on the genetics of bird colouration. The present study shows that melanin-based colour phenotypes are often associated with mutations at melanogenic genes. Differences in melanin-based colouration are caused by switches of eumelanin to pheomelanin production or by changes in feather keratin structure, melanoblast migration and differentiation, as well as melanosome structure. Similar associations with other types of colourations are difficult to establish, because our knowledge about the molecular genetics of carotenoid-based and structural colouration is quasi inexistent. This discrepancy stems from the fact that only melanin-based colouration shows pronounced heritability estimates, i.e. the resemblance between related individuals is usually mainly explained by genetic factors. In contrast, the expression of carotenoid-based colouration is phenotypically plastic with a high sensitivity to variation in environmental conditions. It therefore appears that melanin-based colour traits are prime systems to understand the genetic basis of phenotypic variation. In this context, birds have a great potential to bring us to new frontiers where many exciting discoveries will be made on the genetics of phenotypic traits, such as colouration. In this context, a major goal of our review is to suggest a number of exciting future avenues.
Keywords
Colouration, Birds, Melanin, Quantitative genetics, Phenotypic plasticity, Phenotype canalization
Pubmed
Web of science
Create date
01/05/2013 20:17
Last modification date
20/08/2019 15:02
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