Why h2 does not always equal VA/VP?
Article first published online: 8 FEB 2008
© 2008 The Author
Journal of Evolutionary Biology
Volume 21, Issue 3, pages 647–650, May 2008
How to Cite
WILSON, A. J. (2008), Why h2 does not always equal VA/VP?. Journal of Evolutionary Biology, 21: 647–650. doi: 10.1111/j.1420-9101.2008.01500.x
- Issue published online: 8 FEB 2008
- Article first published online: 8 FEB 2008
- Received 21 November 2007; accepted 19 December 2007
- animal model;
- fixed effect;
Over the last decade, there has been a rapid growth in the application of quantitative genetic techniques to evolutionary studies of natural populations. Whereas this work yields enormous insight into evolutionary processes in the wild, the use of modelling techniques and strategies adopted from animal breeders means that estimates of trait heritabilities (h2) are highly vulnerable to misinterpretation. Specifically, when estimated using animal models, h2 will not generally be comparable across studies and must be interpreted as being conditioned on any fixed effects included in the model. Failure to realize the model dependency of published h2 estimates will give a very misleading, and in most cases upwardly biased, impression of the potential for trait evolution.