A simulation approach of population differentiation and individual assignment to assess the relevance of spatial genetic data among rockfishes

A simulation approach of population differentiation and individual assignment to assess the relevance of spatial genetic data among rockfishes

D. Gomez-Uchida, and M.A. Banks

A simulation approach of population differentiation and individual assignment to assess the relevance of spatial genetic data among rockfishesThis is part of Biology, Assessment, and Management of North Pacific Rockfishes
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Description

We combine temporal estimates of variance effective population size (Ne) and spatial genetic structure analyses from darkblotched rockfish (Sebastes crameri) to analyze the theoretical relationship between FST and population assignment (PA) of individuals to their site of origin under different migration scenarios. Although FST is the most common parameter to measure spatial genetic differentiation, its statistical significance can appear "inflated" by employing markers with numerous alleles (e.g., microsatellite DNA). PA can also assess the data’s strength for population discrimination by minimizing departures from Hardy-Weinberg and linkage (gametic) equilibria if genetic structure exists. Our results suggest that it is unrealistic to obtain informative PAs (>1/k, k = number of populations) when FST < 0.007, even though all simulations showed statistically significant FST values. This limit was proposed as threshold value to classify northeastern Pacific rockfishes using published and unpublished genetic information, and thus assessing which species are more or less likely to lose spatially unique genetic diversity if local populations are extirpated.

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