Title

Resistance and relatedness on an evolutionary graph

Publication Date

8-17-2011

Document Type

Article

Department

Mathematics and Statistics

Disciplines

Life Sciences | Physical Sciences and Mathematics

Publication Title

Journal of the Royal Society Interface

Volume

9

Issue

68

DOI

10.1098/rsif.2011.0429

First Page

511

Last Page

517

Abstract

When investigating evolution in structured populations, it is often convenient to consider the population as an evolutionary graph—individuals as nodes, and whom they may act with as edges. There has, in recent years, been a surge of interest in evolutionary graphs, especially in the study of the evolution of social behaviours. An inclusive fitness framework is best suited for this type of study. A central requirement for an inclusive fitness analysis is an expression for the genetic similarity between individuals residing on the graph. This has been a major hindrance for work in this area as highly technical mathematics are often required. Here, I derive a result that links genetic relatedness between haploid individuals on an evolutionary graph to the resistance between vertices on a corresponding electrical network. An example that demonstrates the potential computational advantage of this result over contemporary approaches is provided. This result offers more, however, to the study of population genetics than strictly computationally efficient methods. By establishing a link between gene transfer and electric circuit theory, conceptualizations of the latter can enhance understanding of the former.

Keywords

relatedness, inclusive fitness, evolutionary graph theory, circuit theory

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