why do we die?

Chris Barry chbarry at mackiller.llnl.gov
Thu Nov 2 21:22:31 EST 1995


When an organism evolves to adapt to a given environment, does that species not
select the behavior or characteristic that is benificial to its survival? If
so, who is to say man is any different? It is apparent that a finite lifespan
is a trait all organisms share (yeast, bacteria too). From a genetic point of
view, It seems to be a trait that was selected early on in evolution. If this
is true, what were the conditions on early earth like that would cause an
organism exist with a lifespan. I have wondered if the atmosphere were say...
all methane and a micro-organism survived off the gas, would the methane
eventually become exhaused? By limiting its lifespan, It seems that a given
organism could maintain a population longer if the resources lasted longer.
Evolutionarily, This would provide more time/opportunity for mutants in the
population to develop and diverge to become new organism... Would it not?

                                  Chris




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