Ward B. Watt

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We study the phylogenetic relationships among some North American Colias ("sulfur") butterflies, using mitochondrial gene sequences (ribosomal RNA, cytochrome oxidase I+II) totaling about 20% of the mitochondrial genome. We find that (1) the lowland species complex shows a branching order different from earlier views; (2) several montane and northern taxa(More)
We study here the connections among body temperature variation, flight performance and flight 'fuel' metabolism in Colias eurytheme butterflies, to begin re-examining the metabolic reasons for animal thermoregulation. Methods are presented for (a) stable extraction of adenylates (and other metabolites) from the flight muscles of individual Colias eurytheme,(More)
Can animal mating systems result in the choice of mates carrying genotypes that are otherwise favored by natural selection? This question is addressed by studying, in natural populations of Colias butterflies, how the phosphoglucose isomerase (PGI) enzyme genotype of males mating Colias females varies with degree of female mate discrimination. Certain PGI(More)
In lowland Cobs butterflies, genotypes of the enzyme phosphoglucose isomerase (PGI) show major differences in molecular function, from which genotypic differences in organismal performance and fitness components in the wild are accurately predictable. The alpine species Colias meadii seems to share electromorph alleles with lowland congeners at PGI and(More)
Little is known of intron sequences’ variation in cases where eukaryotic gene coding regions undergo strong balancing selection. Phosphoglucose isomerase, PGI, of Colias butterflies offers such a case. Its 11 introns include many point mutations, insertions, and deletions. This variation changes with intron position and length, and may leave little evidence(More)
The enzyme phosphoenolpyruvate carboxykinase, PEPCK, occurs in its guanosine-nucleotide-using form in animals and a few prokaryotes. We study its natural genetic variation in Colias (Lepidoptera, Pieridae). PEPCK offers a route, alternative to pyruvate kinase, for carbon skeletons to move between cytosolic glycolysis and mitochondrial Krebs cycle reactions.(More)
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