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Dual-stressor selection alters eco-evolutionary dynamics in experimental communities

MPS-Authors
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Frickel,  Jens
Research Group Community Dynamics, Department Evolutionary Ecology, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Max Planck Society;
Emmy-Noether-Group Community Dynamics, Department Evolutionary Ecology, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Max Planck Society;

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Künzel,  Sven
Department Evolutionary Genetics, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Max Planck Society;

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Becks,  Lutz
Emmy-Noether-Group Community Dynamics, Department Evolutionary Ecology, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Max Planck Society;
Research Group Community Dynamics, Department Evolutionary Ecology, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Hiltunen, T., Cairns, J., Frickel, J., Jalasvuori, M., Laakso, J., Kaitala, V., et al. (2018). Dual-stressor selection alters eco-evolutionary dynamics in experimental communities. Nature Ecology & Evolution, 2(12), 1974-1981. doi:10.1038/s41559-018-0701-5.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0002-A281-4
Abstract
Recognizing when and how rapid evolution drives ecological change is fundamental for our understanding of almost all ecological and evolutionary processes such as community assembly, genetic diversification and the stability of communities and ecosystems. Generally, rapid evolutionary change is driven through selection on genetic variation and is affected by evolutionary constraints, such as tradeoffs and pleiotropic effects, all contributing to the overall rate of evolutionary change. Each of these processes can be influenced by the presence of multiple environmental stressors reducing a population’s reproductive output. Potential consequences of multistressor selection for the occurrence and strength of the link from rapid evolution to ecological change are unclear. However, understanding these is necessary for predicting when rapid evolution might drive ecological change. Here we investigate how the presence of two stressors affects this link using experimental evolution with the bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens and its predator Tetrahymena thermophila. We show that the combination of predation and sublethal antibiotic concentrations delays the evolution of anti-predator defence and antibiotic resistance compared with the presence of only one of the two stressors. Rapid defence evolution drives stabilization of the predator–prey dynamics but this link between evolution and ecology is weaker in the two-stressor environment, where defence evolution is slower, leading to less stable population dynamics. Tracking the molecular evolution of whole populations over time shows further that mutations in different genes are favoured under multistressor selection. Overall, we show that selection by multiple stressors can significantly alter eco-evolutionary dynamics and their predictability.