The evolutionary significance of introgression has been discussed for decades. Questions about potential impacts of transgene flow into wild and weedy populations brought renewed attention to the introgression of crop alleles into those populations. In the past two decades, the field has advanced with considerable descriptive, experimental, and theoretical activity on the dynamics of crop gene introgression and its consequences. As illustrated by five case studies employing an array of different approaches, introgression of crop alleles has occurred for a wide array of species, sometimes without significant consequence, but on occasion leading to the evolution of increased weediness. A new theoretical context has emerged for analyzing empirical data, identifying factors that influence introgression, and predicting introgression's progress. With emerging molecular techniques and analyses, research on crop allele introgression into wild and weedy populations is positioned to make contributions to both transgene risk assessment and reticulate evolution.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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