 Methodology article
 Open access
 Published:
Estimates of introgression as a function of pairwise distances
BMC Bioinformatics volume 20, Article number: 207 (2019)
Abstract
Background
Research over the last 10 years highlights the increasing importance of hybridization between species as a major force structuring the evolution of genomes and potentially providing raw material for adaptation by natural and/or sexual selection. Fueled by research in a few model systems where phenotypic hybrids are easily identified, research into hybridization and introgression (the flow of genes between species) has exploded with the advent of wholegenome sequencing and emerging methods to detect the signature of hybridization at the wholegenome or chromosome level. Amongst these are a general class of methods that utilize patterns of singlenucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) across a tree as markers of hybridization. These methods have been applied to a variety of genomic systems ranging from butterflies to Neanderthals to detect introgression, however, when employed at a fine genomic scale these methods do not perform well to quantify introgression in small sample windows.
Results
We introduce a novel method to detect introgression by combining two widely used statistics: pairwise nucleotide diversity d_{xy} and Patterson’s D. The resulting statistic, the distance fraction (d_{f}), accounts for genetic distance across possible topologies and is designed to simultaneously detect and quantify introgression. We also relate our new method to the recently published f_{d} and incorporate these statistics into the powerful genomics Rpackage PopGenome, freely available on GitHub (pievos101/PopGenome) and the Comprehensive R Archive Network (CRAN). The supplemental material contains a wide range of simulation studies and a detailed manual how to perform the statistics within the PopGenome framework.
Conclusion
We present a new distance based statistic d_{f} that avoids the pitfalls of Patterson’s D when applied to small genomic regions and accurately quantifies the fraction of introgression (f) for a wide range of simulation scenarios.
Background
Hybridization between species is increasingly recognized as a major evolutionary force. Although long known to occur in plants, evidence is mounting that it regularly occurs in many animal groups [1]. Generally thought to decrease differences between two species by sharing alleles across genomes, hybridization can paradoxically act as a ready source of variation, impacting adaptation [2, 3], aiding in evolutionary rescue [4], promoting range expansion [5], leading to species divergence [6, 7] and ultimately fueling adaptive radiation [8, 9]. The advent of whole genome sequencing has prompted the development of a number of methods to detect hybridization across the genome (recently summarized in Payseur and Rieseberg [10])
One class of methods involves quantifying single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) patterns to detect hybridization between taxa. Here we focus on this class of tests involving four taxa. The most widely used of these, Patterson’s D, was first introduced by Green et al. [11] and further developed by Durand et al. [12]. Patterson’s D compares allele patterns of taxa with the Newick tree (((P1,P2),P3),O), to detect introgression between archaic taxon 3 (P3) and ingroup taxon 1 (P1) or 2 (P2 or viceversa). In brief, assuming the outgroup O is fixed for allele A, derived alleles (B) in P3, when shared with either P2 or P1, act as a marker of introgression leading to the following patterns: ABBA or BABA respectively. An excess of either pattern, ABBA or BABA represents a difference from the 50:50 ratio expected from incomplete lineage sorting and thus represents a signal that can be used to detect introgression.
Since its introduction, Patterson’s D has been used for a wide range of studies to estimate the overall amount of hybrid ancestry by summing the ABBA or BABA pattern excess on a whole genome scale starting with studies of Neanderthals and archaic humans [11, 12]. In the past 7 years, Patterson’s D has been increasingly used to localize regions of hybrid ancestry, not only in archaic humans [13] but also in species including butterflies, plants and snakes [14–16].
Currently, Patterson’s D is frequently used in sliding window scans of different regions of the genome [17–19]. However, intensive evaluations of the fourtaxon ABBABABA statistics [20] showed that this approach can lead to many false positives in regions of low recombination and divergence. One of the main reasons is the presence of mainly one of the two alternative topologies as a consequence of a lack of independence of adjacent genomic regions [20], resembling an introgression event, which is exacerbated when analyzing smaller generegions. To circumvent this issue, several strategies have been developed. On one side, more sophisticated nonparametric methods have been used to reduce the number of false positives (e.g., Patterson et al. [21]). On the other side, new statistics have been developed to better estimate the proportion introgression. Martin et al. [20] recently proposed the f_{d} estimate based on the f estimates (e.g. f_{G}, f_{hom}) originally developed by Green et al. [11] which measure the proportion of unidirectional introgression from P3 to P2. Specifically, f_{d} assumes that maximal introgression will lead to equally distributed derived allele frequencies in the donor and the recipient population and therefore utilizes the higher derived allele frequency at each variant site. This strategy aims to model a mixed population maximally affected by introgression. However, this approach has two major shortcomings: First, it is designed to sequentially consider introgression between the archaic population P3 and only one ingroup taxa (P1 or P2). Second, the accuracy of measuring the fraction of introgression strongly depends on the time of geneflow.
Here we combine the approaches of the fourtaxon tests with genetic distance to derive a statistic, the distance fraction (d_{f}), that estimates the proportion of introgression on a fourtaxon tree which strictly ranges from 1 to 1, has symmetric solutions, can be applied to small genomic regions, and is less sensitive to variation in the time of geneflow than f_{d}.
Approach
To derive d_{f} we took a twofold approach. First, we reformulated Patterson’s D, and f_{d} in terms of genetic distances based on the hypothesis that past or recent hybridization will leave a signature of reduced d_{xy} between taxa [18, 22]. Second, we account for nonintrogressed histories by incorporating distances from species tree patterns into the denominator.
First, following convention, A and B denote ancestral and derived alleles respectively. Derived allele frequencies of the four taxa are p_{1k}…p_{4k} at variant site k. Second, d_{xyk} is the average pairwise nucleotide diversity (genetic distance) between population x and y at variant site k. Each genetic distance can be expressed as a sum of patterns in terms of ancestral and derived alleles allowing the terms ABBA and BABA to be rewritten in terms of genetic distances.
Patterson’s D statistic as a function of pairwise distances
Here we derive the Patterson’s D statistic as a function of pairwise genetic distance between taxon x and taxon y (d_{xy}). Following [23] the genetic distance d_{xy} is defined as
at a given variant site k, where n_{x} is the number of individuals in population x and n_{y} is the number of individuals in population y. Then at site k, π_{ij}=1∨0 is the boolean value indicating that the individual i of population x and the individual j of population y contains the same variant (0) or not (1). Following [12, 21] instead of pattern counts, allele frequencies can be used as an unbiased estimator. Given only biallelic sites (SNPs) the genetic distances d_{xy} can be formulated as a function of allele frequencies (p) as follows:
If we define a as the ancestral allele frequency (1−p) and b as the derived allele frequency (p) then
Note, the fourth taxon (outgroup) is used to define the ancestral state a.While incorporating the species tree pattern BBAA, the introgression patterns ABBA and BABA can be rewritten in terms of allele frequencies:
Using distances (d_{xy}) from above, these patterns can then be expressed as:
Finally, this leads to the following distance based Patterson’s D equation for a region containing L variant positions:
In the context of distances p_{2k}·d_{13k} may be seen as the contribution of the variation contained between the lineages 1 to 3 (d_{13k}) to population 2.
As seen from Eq. (1) the Patterson’s D denominator (ABBA + BABA) simplifies to an expression of the derived allele frequency of the archaic population P3 times the average pairwise nucleotide diversity (d_{xy}) between population P1 and P2. This interpretation highlights the original difficulty that Patterson’s D has handling regions of low diversity since the denominator will be systematically reduced in these areas due to the d_{12k} variable; increasing the overall D value. This effect intensifies when at the same time the divergence from the donor population P3 is high. Martin et al. [20] proposed f_{d} which corrects for this by considering the higher derived allele frequency (P2 or P3) at each given variant position; systematically increasing the denominator.
Martin’s f _{d} estimator
We can apply the same distance logic to rewrite the f_{d} statistic. Following the example above for D we start with the definition of the statistic f_{hom} [11] upon which f_{d} is based. The basic idea of the f_{hom} estimate is that complete introgression would lead to complete homogenization of allele frequencies. Here it is assumed that introgression goes from P3 to P2, therefore:
where the numerator is the same as Patterson’s D:
and the denominator can be formulated by substituting P2 with P3,
where π_{3k} is the average pairwise nucleotide diversity within population P3 at site k. The terms p_{3k}·d_{13k} may be interpreted as the contribution of population 3 to the variation contained between the lineages 1 to 3 (subtracting the contribution of population 1 contained in population 3). Following Martin et al. [20] f_{d} is defined as \(f_{d} = \frac {S(P1,P2,P3,O)}{S(P1,PD,PD,O)}\) where PD is the population (2 or 3) with the higher derived allele frequency at each variant position. Here the denominator is:
Leading to the statistic:
where in the denominator, π_{Dk} is the nucleotide diversity within population PD, which is the population with the higher derived allele frequency (P2 or P3) for each variant site k. The difference between the f_{hom} statistic versus f_{d} is that there is no assumption in the latter about the direction of introgression.
The distance based interpretations (above) for SNP based introgression statistics Patterson’s D and f_{d} suggest that it would be beneficial to derive estimators for the proportion of introgression that are free from the problem of reduced diversity. Here we propose a very simple statistic we call the distance fraction (d_{f}), that makes direct use of the distance based numerator of the Patterson’s D statistic and relates the differences of distances to the total distance considered (Fig. 1) by incorporating the BBAA species tree pattern into the denominator. The species tree pattern BBAA contributes to increased divergence between (P1,P2) and P3 in the absence of introgression. As a consequence within our d_{f} framework, we explicitly include the divergence to P3 on the fourtaxon tree.
The d _{f} estimator
In distance terms we may interpret the ABBA and BABA patterns as polarized shared distances (shared distance between two taxa caused by the derived alleles) on a 4taxon tree. ABBA for example can be interpreted as the polarized shared distance between (P2,P3) and P1, where BABA is the polarized shared distance between (P1,P3) and P2. Thus, ABBA is a signal of shared increased distance to P1 and BABA is a signal of shared increased distance to P2. This leads naturally to the distance based numerator that is the same as Patterson’s D statistic Eq. (1).
However, for the denominator, in order to relate those distances to the distances which are not a signal of introgression, the BBAA pattern must to be taken into account, because the species tree captures the third way in which exactly two populations can share derived alleles. According to the interpretations given above, the BBAA species tree pattern can be seen as the polarized shared distances of (P1,P2) to P3. We incorporate this pattern to refine two classes given the system described above:

Class 1: The contribution of derived alleles in P2 to distance (ABBA+BBAA).

Class 2: The contribution of derived alleles in P1 to distance (BABA+BBAA).
The union of both classes includes all possible patterns producing distances on a 4taxon tree by shared derived alleles. Thus, to incorporate all these distances, those representing the BBAA pattern must be added to the denominator, d_{f} can be written as:
For a given region including L variant sites.A decreased BBAA polarized shared distance and an increased polarized shared distance ABBA is a signal of P3⇔P2 introgression. When at the same time the BABA signal reduces we have a maximal support for the ABBA signal.
To hilight the exclusive distances due to introgression the d_{f} statistic we propose here has the following form:
In distance terms, d_{f} may be interpreted as the difference of the distances from P1 and P2 to the archaic population P3 that is caused by introgression (Fig. 1). The transformation of the denominator back into the basic Patterson’s D statistic form suggests adding the given species tree BBAA pattern to the ABBA and BABA class respectively; which can be reasonably assumed to be the most likely pattern in the absence of introgression for a given species tree (((P1,P2),P3),O). With these patterns in hand it becomes possible to distinguish between signals of introgression and nonintrogression. It should be noticed, however, that the d_{f} equation still produces some extreme values when e.g the derived allele frequency p_{1} or p_{2} is zero (often true when blocksize is small). To mitigate this issue, we encourage the user to apply Laplace smoothing in genomic scan applications. In this case the derived allele frequency p is simply replaced by \(p=\left (\sum _{k=1}^{n+2}\pi +1\right)/(n+2)\) for population P1 and P2 and d_{xy} is updated accordingly. The parameter π is a boolean variable and equals to 1 when a derived allele is present. Thus, we simply add a derived allele and an ancestral allele to the populations P1 and P2. We have implemented Laplace smoothing for d_{f} as a feature in PopGenome.
Simulation study
To evaluate the performance of the d_{f} we used a simulation setup following Martin et al. [20]. The Hudson’s ms program [24] was used to generate the topologies with different levels of introgression and the seqgen program [25] to generate the sequence alignments upon which to compare the performance of the three main statistics discussed in this paper, Patterson’s D (D), f_{d} and d_{f}. The baseline simulation is shared with [20] and is performed as follows:
ms 32 1 I 4 8 8 8 8 ej 1 2 1 ej 2 3 1 ej 3 4 1 es 0.1 2 0.9 ej 0.1 5 3 r 50 5000 T  tail n + 4  grep v // > treefile
The above Unix call produces the trees and stores them into a file (treefile). Next, we will store the number of trees in an object called partitions.
partitions=($(wc I treefile))
With these parameters as an input we are now able to call the seqgen program to generate the actual sequences and we store the results into a file called seqfile.
seqgen mHKY I 5000 s 0.01 p $partitions < treefile > seqfile
These example calls generate a 5kb sequence with 8 samples for each of the four populations (I) with split times P12= 1×4N, P123= 2×4N and P123O= 3×4N generations ago (ej). The time of geneflow (t_{GF}) is set to 0.1×4N generations ago with a fraction of introgression of f=0.1 (es). The recombination rate is r=0.01 (r) and the HasegawaKishinoYano model substitution model was applied with a branch scaling factor of s=0.01 (s). Note, we have created a GitHub repository (pievos101/IntrogressionSimulation) including more example calls and add the option to use the Rpackage PopGenome to directly apply the proposed statistics to simulated datasets.
Simulations were varied across a wide range of parameters such as distance to ancestral population, time of gene flow, recombination, ancestral population size and the effect of low variability, window size and sample size as detailed in the Additional file 1: Section S1. These simulations had the following in common: for each fraction of introgression f=[0,0.1,…,0.9,1], we simulated 100 loci, we calculated D, f_{d} and d_{f} and assessed their performance with three standard statistics: adjusted R^{2} (a measure of the ’goodness of fit’), the ’sum of squares due to lack of fit’ (SSLF) the sum of squared distances from the mean value for each fraction of introgression estimated to the real fraction of introgression, and the ’pure sum of squares error’ (SSPE) the sum of squared distances between each simulated value and the mean value for that simulation.
It should be noted that we simulate P2⇔P3 introgression to be able to compare the results of the proposed d_{f} method with the f_{d} estimate. However, d_{f} can naturally measure the fraction of introgression in both directions; with P2⇔P3 introgression d_{f} indicated by positive values (e.g. Fig. 1, change in distance due to shared ABBA pattern) and in the case of P1⇔P3 introgression negative values (BABA, not illustrated). Thus, assessing the accuracy in case of P2⇔P3 introgression applies also for P1⇔P3 introgression.
To further test d_{f}, we evaluated the performance to detect introgression by simulating 10,000 neutral loci (f=0) and 1000 loci subject to introgression (following the parameters outlined in the above example). We interpreted the results using a receiver operating characteristic curve (ROC) analysis that evaluates the area under the curve (AUC), a measure that summarizes model performance, the ability to distinguish introgression from the neutral case, calculated with the Rpackage pROC [26].
We also show the application of our method to real data by calculating d_{f} for 50 kb consecutive windows on the 3L arm of malaria vectors in the Anopheles gambiae species complex [17]. In order to detect chromosomewide outliers we tested the null hypotheses (d_{f}=0)outside of the inversion, and inside the inversion \(\left (d_{f}=\overline {d_{f}}\right)\) since the inversion was previously identified as a negative outlier [17]. The analysis was done using a weighted block jackknife to generate Zvalues. The corresponding P values were corrected for multiple testing using the BenjaminiHochberg false discovery rate (FDR) method [27]. This analysis is easily replicated by following the example in the Additional file 1: Section S2.
All of these analyses were done in the Rpackage PopGenome [28], that efficiently calculates d_{f} (and other statistics including f_{d}, the recently published twotaxon RNDmin method [29] and the original Patterson’s D) from the scale of individual loci to entire genomes.
Results
We performed extensive simulations varying distance to ancestral populations, time of gene flow, recombination, ancestral population size, the effect of low variability, window size and sample size. We found that d_{f} outperforms or is essentially equivalent to the f_{d} estimate to measure the real fraction of introgression for most of the studied ranges of simulation cases. Overall, because it captures natural variation in the denominator, d_{f} has slightly higher variances compared to f_{d} while the mean values are often the least biased as shown by the sum of squares due to lack of fit, yet it provides the best (or nearly equivalent) estimates to f_{d} as judged by the goodness of fit in almost all cases (Additional file 1: Section S1).
The effect of background history and ancestral population sizes
Simulations under a variety of distances to ancestral populations (coalescent times) show that d_{f} is the most accurate estimator for the real fraction of introgression, including under the different coalescent events simulated for both directions of introgression (Fig. 2, Table 1). Following behind d_{f} is f_{d}, which is more affected by differences in coalescent times. In this comparison, Patterson’s D consistently overestimates the fraction of introgression (Fig. 2, Table 1). This known effect [20] is greatest in the most common case where the coalescent times differ between ingroup taxa (P1,P2) and the archaic taxon P3 (Fig. 2a and b). This effect is also slightly impacted by the direction of introgression (e.g. lowered for P2→P3 introgression, see Fig. 2b and d, Table 1). However, for the case where the ingroup taxa (P1,P2) and the archaic taxon P3 are evolutionary very close, it should be noted that d_{f} essentially differs from the f_{d} estimate (Table 1 and Additional file 1: Table S1.1). In this specific case the SSPE of d_{f} increases leading to a lower ’goodness of fit’ compared to f_{d}, while the SSLF are still notably low signifying a very precise mean estimate of the real fraction of introgression. In an further analyses we varied the ancestral population size (Additional file 1: Table S1.2). We observe that an increasing size of the ancestral population of P1 and P2 (N12) relative to N123 leads to higher f_{d} specific SSLF values while d_{f} again is nearly unaffected in this parameter. Interestingly, the d_{f} specific SSPE values are affected by this setting resulting in an equivalent or slightly lower adjusted R^{2} compared to f_{d}. Notably, the opposite is the case when decreasing the ancestral population size N12 relative to N123. In this case d_{f} shows higher SSPE values than f_{d} but in both cases, the adjusted R^{2} of both statistics are high and much greater than those for Patterson’s D as in other cases noted below.
The effect of the time of geneflow
One advantage of d_{f} compared to the other methods studied in this paper is that it is rarely affected by the time of geneflow (Fig. 3). This is due to the fact that, unlike f_{d},d_{f} does not relate the signal of introgression to its maximum calculated from the present. When gene flow occurs in the distant past the denominator of f_{d} estimates increases leading to an underestimation of the fraction of introgression. The model fit shown by adjusted R^{2} of d_{f} is consistently higher than f_{d} (Fig. 3a), but more importantly, at the same time the SSLF values are almost unaffected by the time of geneflow (Fig. 3b). Notably, we see the same effect when introgression is from P2→P3 (Additional file 1: Table S1.3) with d_{f} and f_{d} both showing higher adjusted R^{2} than Patterson’s D and a relatively low SSPE, yet, unlike the other direction, both show an increase in SSLF with time of geneflow with f_{d} greater than d_{f}.
The effect of recombination and low variability
We found that all three methods d_{f}, f_{d} and Patterson’s D become more accurate with increasing recombination rates. This is due to the increase of independent sites of a region analyzed. While d_{f} tends to have higher variances when the recombination rate is low it’s variance is comparable to f_{d} as soon as the recombination rate increases (see Additional file 1: Table S1.4). We also varied the scaled mutation rate (θ) to study the effect of low mutational genomic variability. Overall, d_{f} and f_{d} are only slightly affected by that parameter, whereas in comparison to the other methods d_{f} again showing the lowest SSLF values and with its goodness of fit (adjusted R^{2}) slightly outperforming f_{d} (see Additional file 1: Table S1.5), while Patterson’s D, as in the other cases, performs more poorly than the other statistics in this comparison.
The effect of window size and sample size
As expected d_{f}, f_{d} and Patterson’s D are more accurate with increasing genomic window size (varied from 0.5 kb to 50 kb, Fig. 4), however the latter performs much more poorly than the former statistics. As the window size increased both d_{f} and f_{d} show a nearly identical pattern of increasing goodness of fit (adjusted R^{2} from approximately 0.6  0.9 respectively) and corresponding near zero SSLF (with d_{f} slightly outperforming f_{d}) and a decreasing SSPE, (with f_{d} slightly outperforming d_{f} at the two smallest window sizes; Fig. 4, Additional file 1: Table S1.6). Both d_{f} and f_{d} perform satisfactorily at all windows sizes tested. In contrast, the Patterson’s D shows a poor goodness of fit, a much larger SSLF and for the two smallest window sizes, a much larger SSPE. Note sample size had very little effect overall (Additional file 1: Table S1.7).
On the ability to detect introgression
In this simulation scenario d_{f} and the f_{d} estimate show nearly the same utility (higher is better) for the fraction of introgression and distance to ancestral population (Additional file 1: Section S2); but both greatly outperform the Patterson’s D statistic especially for smaller genomic regions. We also included the recently published RNDmin [29] method in this latter analysis; this alternative only gives good results when the signal of introgression is very strong (Additional file 1: Section S2). In addition, unlike f_{d}, d_{f} is able to quantify the proportion of admixture symmetrically (P3⇔P2 and P3⇔P1) thus simplifying the analysis of real genomic data on a 4taxon system.
Application
Figure 5 shows d_{f} for 50kb consecutive windows on the 3L arm of malaria vectors in the Anopheles gambiae species complex confirming the recently detected region of introgression found in an inversion [17]. Outliers detected both inside and outside the inversion are shown in Table 2.
Overall, we found 9 significant outliers outside the inversion and two outliers within the inversion based on a 0.05 significance level (see Fig. 5). This further reduces to 7 significant outliers outside the inversion and one remaining outlier within the inversion when tested against a 0.01 significance level (see Table 2).
These analyses were all performed within the R package PopGenome [28] and can be easily reproduced with the code given in the Additional file 1: Section S3.
Discussion
In the last 8 years there has been an explosion of population genomic methods to detect introgression. The Patterson’s D method, based on patterns of alleles in a fourtaxon comparison, has been widely applied to a variety of problems that differ from those for which it was originally developed. This statistic can be used to assess whether or not introgression is occurring at the whole genome scale, however, Patterson’s D is best not applied to smaller genomic regions or genescans as noted by Martin et al. 2015.
The distance based approach proposed here has the following strengths: First, the approach is based on characterizing changes in genetic distances that are a natural consequence of introgression. Second, distance measured by d_{xy} allows direct comparisons of quantities that are easily interpreted. Third, the distance fraction, d_{f}, accurately predicts the fraction of introgression over a widerange of simulation parameters. Furthermore, the d_{f} statistic is symmetric (like Patterson’s D) which makes it easy to implement and interpret. Yet, d_{f} outperforms Patterson’s D in all cases (the latter shows a strong positive bias) and d_{f} also outperforms or is equivalent to f_{d} in nearly all cases judged by the goodness of fit and the sum of squares due to lack of fit. Furthermore, unlike f_{d}, d_{f} does not vary strongly with the time of geneflow. This latter strength comes from incorporating the shared genetic distance to taxon 3 (P3) into the denominator, serving to scale d_{f} relative to d_{xy} values between the three species in the comparisons. Ultimately this makes the statistic less subject to extreme values due to low SNP diversity (low genetic distances), as evidence by lower values than other statistics in our examples.
There are several areas where further improvements could be made. Although the distance based derivation of all three statistics is sound, and d_{f} is empirically supported by simulation, further mathematical analysis for this general class of distance estimators is desired. Like other statistics under consideration in this paper, d_{f} depends on resolved species tree with a particular configuration of two closely related species, a third species and an outgroup, and therefore it is not directly applicable to other scenarios. In addition, both the f_{d} and d_{f} perform less accurately when measuring the proportion of admixture when the geneflow occurs from P2 to P3. On the other hand, our simulations show (Fig. 6) the asymmetrical effect of geneflow direction on genetic distance: geneflow from P3 to P2 does not affect the distance between taxon 1 & 3 (d_{13}), however, the opposite it true when introgression from P2 to P3 occurs, the distance between taxon 1 & 2 (d_{12}) is not affected. This suggests comparisons of d_{xy} within given genomic regions may contain signal to infer the direction of introgression and therefore more accurately measure the proportion of admixture.
Overall, the distance based interpretation of introgression statistics suggests a general framework for estimation of the fraction of introgression on a known tree and may be extended in a few complementary directions including the use of model based approaches to aid in outlier identification and potentially model selection. The distance based framework introduced here may lead to other further improvements by measuring how genetic distance changes between different taxa as a function of hybridization across different parts of the genome.
Conclusion
Here we present both a simplified distance based interpretation for Patterson’s D and Martin et al.’s f_{d} and a new distance based statistic d_{f} that avoids the pitfalls of Patterson’s D when applied to small genomic regions and is more accurate and less prone to vary with variation in the time of gene flow than f_{d}. We propose d_{f} as an estimate of introgression which can be used to simultaneously detect and quantify introgression. We implement d_{f} (as well as the other fourtaxon statistics, f_{d}, and the original Patterson’s D) in the powerful Rpackage, PopGenome [28], now updated to easily calculate these statistics for individual loci to entire genomes.
Abbreviations
 FDR:

False discovery rate (BenjaminiHochberg method)
 R ^{2} :

Adjusted R^{2} (a measure of ‘goodness of fit’)
 SSLF:

Sum of squares due to lack of fit (a measure of bias)
 SSPE:

Pure sum of squares error
 SNPs:

Singlenucleotide polymorphisms
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Acknowledgements
We would like to thank Bettina Harr, Matthew Hansen, Jim Henderson, Karl Lindberg, Paul Staab, Sebastian E. RamosOnsins, the California Academy of Sciences genomics discussion group and the IMI journal club for helpful discussions.
Funding
This work was supported by National Science Foundation DBI grant 1427772 to Kapan.
Availability of data and materials
An updated PopGenome package including the methods presented in this paper is available for download from a GitHub repository (https://github.com/pievos101/PopGenome). Rcode to reproduce the simulations can be found at https://github.com/pievos101/IntrogressionSimulation. PopGenome can also be found on the Comprehensive R Archive Network (CRAN). The mosquito data set (Fontaine et al. 2015, Fig. 4) can be downloaded from https://datadryad.org/resource/doi:10.5061/dryad.f4114. This research was shared on the bioRxiv preprint server: https://doi.org/10.1101/154377.
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BP and DDK designed the project. BP developed the methods and performed the simulations. BP and DDK wrote the manuscript. Both authors read and approved the final manuscript.
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Additional file
Additional file 1
Section S1 On the Accuracy to Measure the Real Fraction of Introgression. Section S2 Detecting Introgression from Whole Genome Data. Section S3 PopGenome Usage. (PDF 275 kb)
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Pfeifer, B., Kapan, D.D. Estimates of introgression as a function of pairwise distances. BMC Bioinformatics 20, 207 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1186/s128590192747z
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DOI: https://doi.org/10.1186/s128590192747z