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Saint-Sauveur-en-Rue, France

Drury J.P.,University of California at Los Angeles | Drury J.P.,Institute Of Biologie Of Lens | Anderson C.N.,Dominican University at River Forest | Grether G.F.,University of California at Los Angeles
Journal of Evolutionary Biology

Understanding how phenotypic plasticity evolves and in turn affects the course of evolution is a major challenge in modern biology. By definition, biological species are reproductively isolated, but many animals fail to distinguish between conspecifics and closely related heterospecifics. In some cases, phenotypic plasticity may interfere with species recognition. Here, we document a seasonal polyphenism in the degree of dark wing pigmentation in smoky rubyspot damselflies (Hetaerina titia) - a shift so pronounced that it led early researchers to classify different forms of H. titia as separate species. We further show how the seasonal colour shift impacts species recognition with the sympatric congener Hetaerina occisa. Interspecific aggression (territorial fights) and reproductive interference (mating attempts) are much more frequent early in the year, when H. titia more closely resembles H. occisa, compared to later in the year when the dark phase of H. titia predominates. Using wing colour manipulations of tethered damselflies, we show that the seasonal changes in interspecific interactions are caused not only by the seasonal colour shift but also by shifts in discriminatory behaviour in both species. We also experimentally tested and rejected the hypothesis that learning underlies the behavioural shifts in H. occisa. An alternative hypothesis, which remains to be tested, is that the seasonal polyphenism in H. titia wing coloration has resulted in the evolution of a corresponding seasonal polyphenism in species recognition in H. occisa. This study illustrates one of the many possible ways that plasticity in species recognition cues may influence the evolution of interspecific interactions. © 2015 European Society For Evolutionary Biology. Source

Saadaoui M.,Aix - Marseille University | Saadaoui M.,Institute Of Biologie Of Lens | Litim-Mecheri I.,Aix - Marseille University | Litim-Mecheri I.,University of Strasbourg | And 3 more authors.
Mechanisms of Development

Hox proteins have well-established functions in development and evolution, controlling the final morphology of bilaterian animals. The common phylogenetic origin of Hox proteins and the associated evolutionary diversification of protein sequences provide a unique framework to explore the relationship between changes in protein sequence and function. In this study, we aimed at questioning how sequence variation within arthropod Hox proteins influences function. This was achieved by exploring the functional impact of sequence conservation/divergence of the Hox genes, labial, Sex comb reduced, Deformed, Ultrabithorax and abdominalA from two distant arthropods, the sea spider and the well-studied Drosophila. Results highlight a correlation between sequence conservation within the homeodomain and the degree of functional conservation, and identify a novel functional domain in the Labial protein. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. Source

Jourdren L.,Institute Of Biologie Of Lens | Jourdren L.,French Institute of Health and Medical Research | Jourdren L.,French National Center for Scientific Research | Bernard M.,Institute Of Biologie Of Lens | And 6 more authors.

We developed a modular and scalable framework called Eoulsan, based on the Hadoop implementation of the MapReduce algorithm dedicated to high-throughput sequencing data analysis. Eoulsan allows users to easily set up a cloud computing cluster and automate the analysis of several samples at once using various software solutions available. Our tests with Amazon Web Services demonstrated that the computation cost is linear with the number of instances booked as is the running time with the increasing amounts of data. Source

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