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Intense selection in an age-structured population.

Abstract

In a population with overlapping generations, intense selection can perturb the age distribution and thus affect the rate of increase of an advantageous allele. We found that the age-specific nature of intense selection, such as that generated by many diseases, can affect the outcome of selection on loci, such as those conferring disease resistance. We also found that the temporal dynamics of selection alter the speed of evolution, particularly when selection is intense, and even more so when it is age-specific. We relate our model and results to selection for disease resistance, although the results have broader implications for inferences about past selection pressures in general.

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