Our paper on adaptive evolution of a very common, exonic deletion polymorphism is now published in Science Advances. https://www.science.org/doi/full/10.1126/sciadv.abi4476
Our press office did an excellent job as usual – The press release is here: http://www.buffalo.edu/news/releases/2021/09/030.html
This study is interesting in our opinion for three main reasons:
- We are showing that the adaptive pressures acting on this deletion is dependent on the environment and sex. It raises the question whether such relationships are important for other genetic variants as well.
- The adaptive pressures seem to change over time in the human evolution and may coincide with important cultural leaps that affect life histories.
- Using a vast array of tools (from pop gen to mouse genetics to lipidomics) is now feasible and provide a powerful approach to better delineate human evolutionary trends.
Looking forward to investigating this variant further as well as others that are like it for their evolutionary, anthropological, and biomedical implications.