Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Biological Sciences

Committee Chair

Luciano Matzkin

Committee Member

Luis Cruz-Vera

Committee Member

Bruce Stallsmith


Larvae--Physiology., Drosophila mojavensis--Speciation., Evolution (Biology)


Ecological host shifts likely have a major impact on the evolution of species. The host shift can result in an organism being faced with significant chemical, nutritional, volumetric, and other challenges, which may lead to adaptation. Host shifts can lead to speciation by prezygotic isolation, and even reinforcement through postzygotic isolation. This study looks at behavioral differences in terms of larval activity in populations of Drosophila mojavensis which have experienced host shifts. The mean speed of the four populations of D. mojavensis larvae were measured, and considered in the ecological context. A single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) DNA library was prepared using advance intercross lines (AIL) for a future quantitative trait loci (QTL) analysis. A significant difference was found between all four of the D. mojavensis populations. The presence of differences in larval activity between populations of D. mojavensis provides an opportunity to look factors influencing adaptation during host shifts.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.