Effects of inbreeding and interpopulation crosses on performance and plasticity of two generations of offspring of a declining grassland plant

Tania J. Walisch, Guy Colling, Myriam Poncelet and Diethart Matthies


Service biologie des populations, Musée national d’histoire naturelle, Luxembourg, 25, rue Munster, L-2160 Luxembourg ; Pflanzenökologie, Fachbereich Biologie, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Karl-von-Frisch-Straße 8, D-35043 Marburg

Short Abstract:

Inbreeding depression is a major evolutionary force and an important topic in conservation genetics, as habitat fragmentation leads to increased inbreeding in the populations of many species. Crosses between populations may restore heterozygosity resulting in increased performance (heterosis), but may also lead to the disruption of coadapted gene complexes and to decreased performance (outbreeding depression).

In our study, we investigated the effects of selfing, and of within and between population crosses on reproduction and the performance of two generations of offspring of the declining grassland plant Saxifraga granulata. We also subjected the first generation of offspring to a fertilisation and two stress treatments (competition and defoliation) to investigate whether the effects of inbreeding and interpopulation gene flow depend on environmental conditions.


The meeting starts at 6.30 pm  in the main building (next to the cafeteria) of the National Museum of Natural History, 25, rue Münster, L-2160 Luxembourg


Parking: Plateau du Saint-Esprit or Grund

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