Suppression of sex-ratio meiotic drive and the maintenance of Y-chromosome polymorphism in Drosophila

Jaenike, J,  Evolution,  53:164-174. 1999.

Like several other species of Drosophila, D. quinaria is polymorphic for X-chromosome meiotic drive; matings involving males that carry a “sex-ratio” X chromosome (X(SR)) result in the production of strongly female-biased offspring sex ratios (Jaenike 1996). A survey of isofemale lines of D, quinaria from several populations reveals that there is genetic variation for partial suppression of this meiotic drive. Crossing experiments show that there is Y-linked. and probably autosomal, variation for suppression of drive. Y-linked suppressors of X-chromosome drive have now been described in several species of Diptera. I develop a simple model for the maintenance of Y-chromosome polymorphism in species polymorphic for X-linked meiotic drive. One interesting feature of this model is that, if there is a stable Y-chromosome polymorphism, then the equilibrium frequency of the standard and sex-ratio X chromosomes is determined solely by Y-chromosome parameters, not by the fitness effects of the different X chromosomes on their carriers. This model suggests that Y-chromosome polymorphism may be easier to maintain than previously thought, and I hypothesize that karyotypic variation in Y chromosomes will be found to be associated with suppression of sex-ratio meiotic drive in other species of Drosophila.