, Volume 5, Issue 4, pp 361-369

Analytic and simulation models predicting positive genetic correlations between traits linked by trade-offs

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Using a two-loci multiplicative model of resource allocation, we show how the existence of several levels of resource allocation may affect the sign of the genetic correlations between traits linked by trade-offs. Positive genetic correlations between components of fitness affected by genetic trade-offs may result from different amounts of genetic variability at the pleiotropic loci determining the allocation of resources. Thus positive genetic correlations may be obtained in the absence both of environmental variation and of differences between individuals in resource acquisition. Nevertheless, positive correlations between all components of fitness at the same time cannot be obtained without variability in the acquisition of resources.