Evolution

Definition

Evolution is the process of heritable change in populations of organisms over multiple generations. Evolutionary biology is the study of this process, which can occur through mechanisms including natural selection, sexual selection and genetic drift.

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Latest Research and Reviews

  • Research |

    Steroid biomarkers provide evidence for a rapid rise of marine planktonic algae between 659 and 645 million years ago, establishing more efficient energy transfers and driving ecosystems towards larger and increasingly complex organisms.

    • Jochen J. Brocks
    • , Amber J. M. Jarrett
    • , Eva Sirantoine
    • , Christian Hallmann
    • , Yosuke Hoshino
    •  & Tharika Liyanage
  • Research | | open

    Behavioral manipulation of host by pathogens has been observed in vertebrates, invertebrates, and plants. Here the authors show that in Drosophila, infection with pathogenic bacteria leads to increased pheromone release, which attracts healthy flies. This process benefits the pathogen since it enhances bacterial dispersal, but is detrimental to the host.

    • Ian W. Keesey
    • , Sarah Koerte
    • , Mohammed A. Khallaf
    • , Tom Retzke
    • , Aurélien Guillou
    • , Ewald Grosse-Wilde
    • , Nicolas Buchon
    • , Markus Knaden
    •  & Bill S. Hansson
  • Research | | open

    The three-spined stickleback is a model species for the study of adaptive divergence. Here, Raeymaekers et al. compare how the three-spined stickleback and its relative the nine-spined stickleback vary at the phenotypic and genomic levels in response to the same spatial and environmental drivers.

    • Joost A. M. Raeymaekers
    • , Anurag Chaturvedi
    • , Pascal I. Hablützel
    • , Io Verdonck
    • , Bart Hellemans
    • , Gregory E. Maes
    • , Luc Meester
    •  & Filip A. M. Volckaert
  • Reviews |

    For clinical cases of Mendelian disease that lack a genetic diagnosis, genome and exome sequencing are increasingly used for seeking the genetic cause. This Review discusses the strategies and computational tools for prioritizing the many genetic variants identified in each genome into those that are most likely to be causal for disease. The authors discuss how diverse types of biochemical, evolutionary, pedigree and clinical-phenotype information are used, and they highlight common pitfalls to be aware of for responsible variant prioritization.

    • Karen Eilbeck
    • , Aaron Quinlan
    •  & Mark Yandell
  • Research |

    Computational analyses of the yeast proteome and experimental work show that homorepeats facilitate protein-protein interactions and rapid protein divergence. To balance their propensity to aggregate, homorepeats are preferentially retained in proteins that are stringently regulated.

    • Sreenivas Chavali
    • , Pavithra L Chavali
    • , Guilhem Chalancon
    • , Natalia Sanchez de Groot
    • , Rita Gemayel
    • , Natasha S Latysheva
    • , Elizabeth Ing-Simmons
    • , Kevin J Verstrepen
    • , Santhanam Balaji
    •  & M Madan Babu
  • Reviews |

    The differentiation of an organism into a male or female phenotype is a critical developmental process, but the mechanisms that control this decision are remarkably evolutionarily labile. This Review discusses the wide diversity of vertebrate sex-determination mechanisms, their rapid evolution under different forms of genetic and environmental control and the over-arching principles that are shared despite this mechanistic diversity.

    • Blanche Capel

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