Wayne K Potts

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Only natural selection can account for the extreme genetic diversity of genes of the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). Although the structure and function of classic MHC genes is well understood at the molecular and cellular levels, there is controversy about how MHC diversity is selectively maintained. The diversifying selection can be driven by(More)
House mice prefer mates genetically dissimilar at the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). The highly polymorphic MHC genes control immunological self/nonself recognition; therefore, this mating preference may function to provide “good genes” for an individual’s offspring. However, the evidence for MHC-dependent mating preferences is controversial, and(More)
The detrimental effects of inbreeding on vertebrates are well documented for early stages of the life cycle in the laboratory. However, the consequences of inbreeding on long-term survival and reproductive success (Darwinian fitness) are uncertain for vertebrates in the wild. Here, we report direct experimental evidence for vertebrates that competition(More)
Because of the central role of major histocompatibility complex (MHC) genes in immune recognition, it is often assumed that parasite-driven selection maintains the unprecendented genetic diversity of these genes. But associations between MHC genotype and specific infectious diseases have been difficult to identify with a few exceptions such as Marek's(More)
Research into visual and acoustic signals has demonstrated that exaggerated sexual displays often provide an honest indicator of a male's resistance to parasites. Recent studies with rodents and humans now suggest that chemosensory signals also reveal a male's disease resistance and his genetic compatibility. Our understanding of sexual selection has been(More)
Rad23 is an evolutionarily conserved protein that is important for nucleotide excision repair. A regulatory role has been proposed for Rad23 because rad23 mutants are sensitive to ultraviolet light but are still capable of incising damaged DNA. Here we show that Rad23 interacts with the 26S proteasome through an amino-terminal ubiquitin-like domain(More)
To explore the evolutionary dynamics of genes in the major histocompatibility complex (Mhc) in nonmammalian vertebrates, we have amplified complete sequences of the polymorphic second (beta1) and third (beta2) exons of class II beta chain genes of songbirds. The pattern of nucleotide substitution in the antigen-binding site of sequences cloned from three(More)
House mice (Mus musculus domesticus) avoid mating with individuals that are genetically similar at the major histocompatibility complex (MHC). Mice are able recognize MHC-similar individuals through specific odour cues. However, to mate disassortatively for MHC genes, individuals must have a referent, either themselves (self-inspection) or close kin(More)
Long-tailed manakins mate in leks and cooperate in multiyear male-male partnerships. An alpha male is responsible for virtually all mating, whereas a beta male assists in the courtship displays. Such altruism by the beta male poses a problem for evolutionary theory because most theoretical treatments and empirical examples of cooperative behavior involve(More)
Genes of the major histocompatibility complex (Mhc) are the most polymorphic functional loci in mammalian populations, but little is known of Mhc variability in natural populations of nonmammalian vertebrates. To help extend such studies to birds and relatives, we present a pair of degenerate primers that amplify polymorphic segments of one chain (the beta(More)