Theses and Dissertations

Issuing Body

Mississippi State University


Amy L. Dapper

Committee Member

Jean-Francois Gout

Committee Member

Amy L. Dapper

Committee Member

Jean-Francois Gout

Committee Member

Qian Zhou, Andy Perkins

Date of Degree


Original embargo terms


Document Type

Graduate Thesis - Open Access


Computational Biology

Degree Name

Master of Science


College of Arts and Sciences


Department of Biological Sciences


Meiotic recombination is both a fundamental biological process required for proper chromosomal segregation during meiosis and a fundamental genomic parameter that shapes major features of the genomic landscape. While there is strong evidence of fitness costs of low rates of recombination, the possible fitness costs of high rates of recombination are less defined. To determine whether a single lower fitness bound can explain the variation in recombination rate observed in human populations, we simulated the evolution of recombination rate as a quantitative trait using empirically-derived parameters. For our fitness function, we implemented a hyperbolic tangent curve with flexible parameters to capture a wide range of existing hypotheses. We found that both a lower and upper bound are necessary to explain the observed variation in recombination rate, and we describe a parameter space for an upper bound on recombination rate that produces results consistent with empirical observations.