Sibling diversity gives sexual reproduction the advantage in a changing environment

Makoto Douge, Yoh Iwasa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Intense competition among siblings may favour sexual reproduction because phenotypic diversity is higher among sexual siblings than asexual siblings. However, previous theoretical studies concluded that competition among sibs is ineffective at promoting sexual reproduction. Question: What are the conditions required for sib-competition to favour sexual reproduction? Search method: Mathematical and numerical analyses of the model. We identify the mechanisms that reduce the advantage of sex. Key assumptions: Sexual reproduction generates phenotypic diversity among siblings, whereas asexual reproduction doubles the reproductive rate. The virtual habitat consists of many patches, each with different environmental conditions. Only one individual - the most adapted - survives in each patch. Conclusions: A greater number of environmental factors and variation of the fitness achieved by adapted phenotypes favour sexual reproduction. Intense sibling competition is likely to be an important process for maintaining sex.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)459-475
Number of pages17
JournalEvolutionary Ecology Research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics


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