A Roadmap for Understanding the Evolutionary Significance of Structural Genomic Variation
Structural genomic variants (SVs) are ubiquitous and play a major role in adaptation and speciation. Yet, comparative and population genomics have focused predominantly on gene duplications and large-effect inversions. The lack of a common framework for studying all SVs is hampering progress towards a more systematic assessment of their evolutionary significance. Here we (i) review how different types of SVs affect ecological and evolutionary processes; (ii) suggest unifying definitions and recommendations for future studies; and (iii) provide a roadmap for the integration of SVs in ecoevolutionary studies. In doing so, we lay the foundation for population genomics, theoretical, and experimental approaches to understand how the full spectrum of SVs impacts ecological and evolutionary processes.