Determinants of effective population size for loci with different modes of inheritance

Jay F. Storz, U. Ramakrishnan, S. C. Alberts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Here we report an assessment of the determinants of effective population size (Ne) in species with overlapping generations. Specifically, we used a stochastic demographic model to investigate the influence of different life-history variables on NeI N (where N = population census number) and the influence of sex differences in life-history variables on Ne for loci with different modes of inheritance. We applied an individual-based modeling approach to two datasets: one from a natural population of savannah baboons (Papio cynocephalus) in the Amboseli basin of southern Kenya and one from a human tribal population (the Gainj of Papua New Guinea). Simulation-based estimates of NeIN averaged 0.329 for the Amboseli baboon population (SD = 0.116, 95% Cl = 0.172 - 0.537) and 0.786 for the Gainj (SD = 0.184, 95% Cl = 0.498 - 1.115). Although variance in male fitness had a substantial impact on NeIN in each of the two primate populations, ratios of Ne values for autosomal and sex-linked loci exhibited no significant departures from Poisson-expected values. In each case, similarities in sex-specific Ne values were attributable to the unexpectedly high variance in female fitness. Variance in male fitness resulted primarily from age-dependent variance in reproductive success, whereas variance in female fitness resulted primarily from stochastic variance in survival during the reproductive phase.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)497-502
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Heredity
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics
  • Genetics(clinical)


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