Fixation probabilities in weakly compressible fluid flows

Abigail Plummer (Corresponding author), Roberto Benzi, David R. Nelson, Federico Toschi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
4 Downloads (Pure)


Competition between biological species in marine environments is affected by the motion of the surrounding fluid. An effective 2D compressibility can arise, for example, from the convergence and divergence of water masses at the depth at which passively traveling photosynthetic organisms are restricted to live. In this report, we seek to quantitatively study genetics under flow. To this end, we couple an off-lattice agent-based simulation of two populations in 1D to a weakly compressible velocity field—first a sine wave and then a shell model of turbulence. We find for both cases that even in a regime where the overall population structure is approximately unaltered, the flow can significantly diminish the effect of a selective advantage on fixation probabilities. We understand this effect in terms of the enhanced survival of organisms born at sources in the flow and the influence of Fisher genetic waves.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)373-378
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America (PNAS)
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jan 2019


  • Fisher wave
  • Population genetics
  • Selective advantage
  • Stochastic processes
  • Turbulence
  • Oceans and Seas
  • Models, Biological
  • Probability
  • Plankton/physiology
  • Seawater


Dive into the research topics of 'Fixation probabilities in weakly compressible fluid flows'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this