Molecular Clocks & Generation Time

Halford Dace daceh at shrike.und.ac.za
Thu May 4 00:53:52 EST 1995

Just a brief addition to the molecular clock debate.  I don't know whether
it'll be useful or not.

It's probably worth bearing in mind that mutation rates per se probably
aren't that important - a mutation will only enter a population's gene
pool if it happens in a germ line cell.  I would think that this would
tend to `speed up' the molecular clocks of organisms with shorter
generatioal times, since more generations (ie more gametogenesis &
fertilizations) in a given period would allow more mutations to
accumulate, since the genes comprising the population's gene pool
would have spent a greater proportion of time as gametes.

I think the idea makes sense but I'm sure that there's a better way of
expressing it.


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