Chase MA, Ellegren H, Mugal CF
Evolution 75 (9) 2179-2196 [2021-09-00; online 2021-05-03]
A current debate within population genomics surrounds the relevance of patterns of genomic differentiation between closely related species for our understanding of adaptation and speciation. Mounting evidence across many taxa suggests that the same genomic regions repeatedly develop elevated differentiation in independent species pairs. These regions often coincide with high gene density and/or low recombination, leading to the hypothesis that the genomic differentiation landscape mostly reflects a history of background selection, and reveals little about adaptation or speciation. A comparative genomics approach with multiple independent species pairs at a timescale where gene flow and ILS are negligible permits investigating whether different evolutionary processes are responsible for generating lineage-specific versus shared patterns of species differentiation. We use whole-genome resequencing data of 195 individuals from four Ficedula flycatcher species comprising two independent species pairs: collared and pied flycatchers, and red-breasted and taiga flycatchers. We found that both shared and lineage-specific FST peaks could partially be explained by selective sweeps, with recurrent selection likely to underlie shared signatures of selection, whereas indirect evidence supports a role of recombination landscape evolution in driving lineage-specific signatures of selection. This work therefore provides evidence for an interplay of positive selection and recombination to genomic landscape evolution.