Several questions on evolution, and mutation (rate)

Ram Samudrala ram at mbisgi.umd.edu
Mon Sep 9 04:03:09 EST 1996


Don Cates (cates at cc.umanitoba.ca) wrote:

>There is some change in function of a gene. You call this evolution. It
>is beneficial and spreads through the population by natural selection.
>You call this natural selection. What if the individual who aquired this
>new function failed to have offspring. According to you, evolution took
>place but natural selection failed. I would think that the spread of the
>innovation must take place before one can say that evolution took place.

I disagree.  There is nothing /evolving/ when the spread (of a gene or
a set of genes through reproduction) is happening.  Whereas, when the
new function is being formed, there is something /evolving/.

BTW, I think of proteins with lethal functions also as having
"evolved" from non-lethal proteins.  My definitions are based on terms
where the underlying semnatics makes sense and is not confusing---not
based on how many people would agree.  As I have said, as long as the
distinction is made, it doesn't matter what you call it---but I'm more
than happy to argue about it. <-:

--Ram

me at ram.org  ||  http://www.ram.org  ||  http://www.twisted-helices.com/th
    If you didn't care what happened to me, and I didn't care for you, 
    we would zig zag our way through the boredom and pain occasionally 
  glancing up through the rain wondering which of the buggers to blame
  and watching for pigs on the wing.                     ---Pink Floyd



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