Beauty has its cost
© BioMed Central Ltd 2000
Published: 10 July 2000
Brooks reports in the 6 July Nature that male guppies that are sexually more attractive are also evolutionarily less fit (Nature 2000, 406:67-70). This may reflect negative pleiotropic effects of genes for attractiveness, such as the energetic cost of creating large amounts of pigments. Alternatively, deleterious alleles may be hitching a ride in the region of the Y chromosome that has attractiveness genes such as those for color patterns. The increased attractiveness of the male fish ensure the chromosome's genetic survival, but suppression of recombination on the Y chromosome means that the deleterious alleles are not weeded out.
- Nature magazine, [http://www.nature.com/nature/]