The Relationship Between Genome Size and Metabolic Rate in Extant Vertebrates
Genome size has long been hypothesized to affect metabolic rate in various groups of animals. The mechanism behind this proposed association is the nucleotypic effect, in which large nucleus and cell sizes influence cellular metabolism through surface area-to-volume ratios. Here, we provide a review of the recent literature on the relationship between genome size and metabolic rate. We also conduct an analysis using phylogenetic comparative methods and a large sample of extant vertebrates. We find no evidence that the effect of genome size improves upon models in explaining metabolic rate variation. Not surprisingly, our results show a strong positive relationship between metabolic rate and body mass, as well as a substantial difference in metabolic rate between endothermic and ectothermic vertebrates, controlling for body mass. The presence of endothermy can also explain elevated rate shifts in metabolic rate whereas genome size cannot. We further find no evidence for a punctuated model of evolution for metabolic rate. Our results do not rule out the possibility that genome size affects cellular physiology in some tissues, but they are consistent with previous research suggesting little support for a direct functional connection between genome size and basal metabolic rate in extant vertebrates.
- Downloaded 711 times
- Download rankings, all-time:
- Site-wide: 46,491
- In evolutionary biology: 2,173
- Year to date:
- Site-wide: 124,823
- Since beginning of last month:
- Site-wide: 146,878
Downloads over time
Distribution of downloads per paper, site-wide
- 27 Nov 2020: The website and API now include results pulled from medRxiv as well as bioRxiv.
- 18 Dec 2019: We're pleased to announce PanLingua, a new tool that enables you to search for machine-translated bioRxiv preprints using more than 100 different languages.
- 21 May 2019: PLOS Biology has published a community page about Rxivist.org and its design.
- 10 May 2019: The paper analyzing the Rxivist dataset has been published at eLife.
- 1 Mar 2019: We now have summary statistics about bioRxiv downloads and submissions.
- 8 Feb 2019: Data from Altmetric is now available on the Rxivist details page for every preprint. Look for the "donut" under the download metrics.
- 30 Jan 2019: preLights has featured the Rxivist preprint and written about our findings.
- 22 Jan 2019: Nature just published an article about Rxivist and our data.
- 13 Jan 2019: The Rxivist preprint is live!