Sex determination systems are exceptionally diverse and have undergone multiple and independent evolutionary transitions among species, particularly reptiles. However, the mechanisms underlying these transitions have not been established. Here, we tested for differences in sex-linked markers in the only known reptile that is polymorphic for sex determination system, the spotted snow skink, Niveoscincus ocellatus, to quantify the genomic differences that have accompanied this transition. In a highland population, sex is determined genetically, whereas in a lowland population, offspring sex ratio is influenced by temperature. We found a similar number of sex-linked loci in each population, including shared loci, with genotypes consistent with male heterogamety (XY). However, population-specific linkage disequilibrium suggests greater differentiation of sex chromosomes in the highland population. Our results suggest that transitions between sex determination systems can be facilitated by subtle genetic differences.
Tropical tuna fisheries are central to food security and economic development of many regions of the world. Contemporary population assessment and management generally assume these fisheries exploit a single mixed spawning population, within ocean basins. To date population genetics has lacked the required power to conclusively test this assumption. Here we demonstrate heterogeneous population structure among yellowfin tuna sampled at three locations across the Pacific Ocean (western, central, and eastern) via analysis of double digest restriction-site associated DNA using Next Generation Sequencing technology. The differences among locations are such that individuals sampled from one of the three regions examined can be assigned with close to 100% accuracy demonstrating the power of this approach for providing practical markers for fishery independent verification of catch provenance in a way not achieved by previous techniques. Given these results, an extended pan-tropical survey of yellowfin tuna using this approach will not only help combat the largest threat to sustainable fisheries (i.e. illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing) but will also provide a basis to transform current monitoring, assessment, and management approaches for this globally significant species.