5 years ago

Exact results for the probability and stochastic dynamics of fixation in the Wright-Fisher model

In this work we consider fixation of an allele in a population. Fixation is key to understanding the way long-term evolutionary change occurs at the gene and molecular levels. Two basic aspects of fixation are: (i) the chance it occurs and (ii) the way the gene frequency progresses to fixation. We present exact results for both aspects of fixation for the Wright–Fisher model. We give the exact fixation probability for some different schemes of frequency-dependent selection. We also give the corresponding exact stochastic difference equation that generates frequency trajectories which ultimately fix. Exactness of the results means selection need not be weak. There are possible applications of this work to data analysis, modelling, and tests of approximations. The methodology employed illustrates that knowledge of the fixation probability, for all initial frequencies, fully characterises the dynamics of the Wright–Fisher model. The stochastic equations for fixing trajectories allow insight into the way fixation occurs. They provide the alternative picture that fixation is driven by the injection of one carrier of the fixing allele into the population each generation. The stochastic equations allow explicit calculation of some properties of fixing trajectories and their efficient simulation. The results are illustrated and tested with simulations.

Publisher URL: www.sciencedirect.com/science

DOI: S002251931730303X

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