Evolution of the differential regulation of duplicate genes after polyploidization

Stephen D. Ferris, Gregory S. Whitt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In the 50 million years since the polyploidization event that gave rise to the catostomid family of fishes the duplicate genes encoding isozymes have undergone different fates. Ample opportunity has been available for regulatory evolution of these duplicate genes. Approximately half the duplicate genes have lost their expressions during this time. Of the duplicate genes remaining, the majority have diverged to different extents in their expression within and among adult tissues. The pattern of divergence of duplicate gene expression is consistent with the accumulation of mutations at regulatory genes. The absence of a correlation of extent of divergence of gene expression with the level of genetic variability for isozymes at these loci is consistent with the view that the rates of regulatory gene and structural gene evolution are uncoupled. The magnitude of divergence of duplicate gene expressions varies among tissues, enzymes, and species. Little correlation was found with the extent of divergence of duplicate gene expression within a species and its degree of morphological "conservatism", although species pairs which are increasingly taxonomically distant are less likely to share specific patterns of differential gene expression. Probable phylogenetic times of origin of several patterns of differential gene expression have been proposed. Some patterns of differential gene expression have evolved in recent evolutionary times and are specific to one or a few species, whereas at least one pattern of differential gene expression is present in nearly all species and probably arose soon after the polyploidization event. Multilocus isozymes, formed by polyploidization, provide a useful model system for studying the forces responsible for the maintenance of duplicate genes and the evolution of these once identical genes to new spatially and temporally specific patterns of regulation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)267-317
Number of pages51
JournalJournal of Molecular Evolution
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1979


  • Gene duplication and regulation
  • Isozymes
  • Molecular and regulatory evolution
  • Polyploidy Fish
  • Teleosts

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Molecular Biology
  • Genetics


Dive into the research topics of 'Evolution of the differential regulation of duplicate genes after polyploidization'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this