Biology as Poetry: Evolutionary Biology

Bacteriophage Ecology Group

Disruptive Frequency-Dependent Selection

Positive feedback mechanism whereby increases in fraction of specific alleles, found at a given locus, results in further increases.

This can occur when alleles encode antagonistic products that are more effective when produced at higher overall densities, such as bacteriocins. The result is selective elimination of susceptible non-producers which, as they will lack the antagonistic allele, will result in increases in the prevalence of the antagonistic allele within a population.

A category of natural selection. Contrast with stabilizing frequency-dependent selection.

Disruptive frequency-dependent selection is disruptive particularly of balanced polymorphisms. Disruptive frequency-dependent selection is also described as positive frequency-dependent selection or purifying frequency-dependent selection. Contrast with stabilizing frequency-dependent selection.

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