A1 Journal article (refereed)
Natural selection mediated by seasonal time constraints increases the alignment between evolvability and developmental plasticity (2021)

Johansson, F., Watts, P. C., Sniegula, S., & Berger, D. (2021). Natural selection mediated by seasonal time constraints increases the alignment between evolvability and developmental plasticity. Evolution, 75(2), 464-475. https://doi.org/10.1111/evo.14147

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Johansson, F.; Watts, P. C.; Sniegula, S.; Berger, D.

Journal or series: Evolution

ISSN: 0014-3820

eISSN: 1558-5646

Publication year: 2021

Volume: 75

Issue number: 2

Pages range: 464-475

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

Publication country: United States

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/evo.14147

Publication open access: Openly available

Publication channel open access: Partially open access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/73727

Additional information: Data are deposited on Dryad (https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.jsxksn07z).


Phenotypic plasticity can either hinder or promote adaptation to novel environments. Recent studies that have quantified alignments between plasticity, genetic variation and divergence propose that such alignments may reflect constraints that bias future evolutionary trajectories. Here, we emphasize that such alignments may themselves be a result of natural selection and do not necessarily indicate constraints on adaptation. We estimated developmental plasticity and broad sense genetic covariance matrices (G) among damselfly populations situated along a latitudinal gradient in Europe. Damselflies were reared at photoperiod treatments that simulated the seasonal time constraints experienced at northern (strong constraints) and southern (relaxed constraints) latitudes. This allowed us to partition the effects of (1) latitude, (2) photoperiod and (3) environmental novelty on G and its putative alignment with adaptive plasticity and divergence. Environmental novelty and latitude did not affect G, but photoperiod did. Photoperiod increased evolvability in the direction of observed adaptive divergence and developmental plasticity when G was assessed under strong seasonal time constraints at northern (relative to southern) photoperiod. Since selection and adaptation under time constraints is well understood in Lestes damselflies, our results suggest that natural selection can shape the alignment between divergence, plasticity and evolvability.

Keywords: evolution; natural selection; environmental changes; adaptation (change); phenotype; damselflies

Free keywords: phenotypic plasticity; adaptation; developmental bias; genetic constraints; life history; latitude; time constraints; G‐matrix

Contributing organizations

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2021

JUFO rating: 3

Last updated on 2022-20-09 at 13:29