Evolutionary rescue in populations of Pseudomonas fluorescens across an antibiotic gradient
Article first published online: 4 FEB 2013
© 2013 The Authors. Evolutionary Applications published by Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Volume 6, Issue 4, pages 608–616, June 2013
How to Cite
Ramsayer, J., Kaltz, O. and Hochberg, M. E. (2013), Evolutionary rescue in populations of Pseudomonas fluorescens across an antibiotic gradient. Evolutionary Applications, 6: 608–616. doi: 10.1111/eva.12046
- Issue published online: 21 MAY 2013
- Article first published online: 4 FEB 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 3 DEC 2012
- Manuscript Received: 29 JUN 2012
- Agence National de la Recherche ‘EvolStress’. Grant Number: ANR-09-BLAN-099-01
- McDonnell Foundation. Grant Number: JSMF 220020294/SCS
- evolutionary rescue;
- Pseudomonas fluorescens ;
Environmental change represents a major threat to species persistence. When change is rapid, a population's only means of persisting may be to evolve resistance. Understanding such ‘evolutionary rescues’ is important for conservation in the face of global change, but also in the agricultural and medical sciences, where the objective is rather population control or eradication. Theory predicts that evolutionary rescue is fostered by large populations and genetic variation, but this has yet to be tested. We replicated hundreds of populations of the bacterium Pseudomonas fluorescens SBW25 submitted to a range of doses of the antibiotic streptomycin. Consistent with theory, population size, and initial genetic diversity influenced population persistence and the evolution of antibiotic resistance. Although all treated populations suffered initial declines, those experiencing the smallest decreases were most likely to be evolutionarily rescued. Our results contribute to our understanding of how evolution may or may not save populations and species from extinction.