Genomic mechanisms and consequences of diverse postzygotic barriers between monkeyflower species

V. Alex Sotola, Colette S. Berg, Matthew Samuli, Hongfei Chen, Samuel J. Mantel, Paul A. Beardsley, Yao Wu Yuan, Andrea L. Sweigart, Lila Fishman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


The evolution of genomic incompatibilities causing postzygotic barriers to hybridization is a key step in species divergence. Incompatibilities take 2 general forms-structural divergence between chromosomes leading to severe hybrid sterility in F1 hybrids and epistatic interactions between genes causing reduced fitness of hybrid gametes or zygotes (Dobzhansky-Muller incompatibilities). Despite substantial recent progress in understanding the molecular mechanisms and evolutionary origins of both types of incompatibility, how each behaves across multiple generations of hybridization remains relatively unexplored. Here, we use genetic mapping in F2 and recombinant inbred line (RIL) hybrid populations between the phenotypically divergent but naturally hybridizing monkeyflowers Mimulus cardinalis and M. parishii to characterize the genetic basis of hybrid incompatibility and examine its changing effects over multiple generations of experimental hybridization. In F2s, we found severe hybrid pollen inviability (<50% reduction vs parental genotypes) and pseudolinkage caused by a reciprocal translocation between Chromosomes 6 and 7 in the parental species. RILs retained excess heterozygosity around the translocation breakpoints, which caused substantial pollen inviability when interstitial crossovers had not created compatible heterokaryotypic configurations. Strong transmission ratio distortion and interchromosomal linkage disequilibrium in both F2s and RILs identified a novel 2-locus genic incompatibility causing sex-independent gametophytic (haploid) lethality. The latter interaction eliminated 3 of the expected 9 F2 genotypic classes via F1 gamete loss without detectable effects on the pollen number or viability of F2 double heterozygotes. Along with the mapping of numerous milder incompatibilities, these key findings illuminate the complex genetics of plant hybrid breakdown and are an important step toward understanding the genomic consequences of natural hybridization in this model system.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberiyad156
Issue number3
StatePublished - Nov 2023


  • Mimulus
  • Plant Genetics and Genomics
  • hybrid incompatibility
  • reciprocal translocation
  • reproductive isolation
  • sterility
  • transmission ratio distortion
  • Hybridization, Genetic
  • Genomics
  • Chromosome Mapping
  • Quantitative Trait Loci
  • Mimulus/genetics


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