Effects of motion in structured populations

In evolutionary processes, population structure has a substantial effect on natural selection. Here, we analyse how motion of individuals affects constant selection in structured populations. Motion is relevant because it leads to changes in the distribution of types as mutations march towards fixation or extinction. We describe motion as the swapping of individuals on graphs, and more generally as the shuffling of individuals between reproductive updates. Beginning with a one-dimensional graph, the cycle, we prove that motion suppresses natural selection for death–birth (DB) updating or for any process that combines birth–death (BD) and DB updating. If the rule is purely BD updating, no change in fixation probability appears in the presence of motion. We further investigate how motion affects evolution on the square lattice and weighted graphs. In the case of weighted graphs, we find that motion can be either an amplifier or a suppressor of natural selection. In some cases, whether it is one or the other can be a function of the relative reproductive rate, indicating that motion is a subtle and complex attribute of evolving populations. As a first step towards understanding less restricted types of motion in evolutionary graph theory, we consider a similar rule on dynamic graphs induced by a spatial flow and find qualitatively similar results, indicating that continuous motion also suppresses natural selection.


Effects of motion in structured populations
Madison S. Krieger, Alex McAvoy, Martin A. Nowak
Published 4 October 2017.DOI: 10.1098/rsif.2017.0509

Source: rsif.royalsocietypublishing.org