Molecular evolution articles from across Nature Portfolio

Molecular evolution is the area of evolutionary biology that studies evolutionary change at the level of the DNA sequence. It includes the study of rates of sequence change, relative importance of adaptive and neutral changes, and changes in genome structure.

Latest Research and Reviews

News and Comment

  • News & Views |

    In cyanobacteria, the interaction between an orange carotenoid protein and its allosteric regulator evolved when a horizontal gene transfer event first brought the two proteins together. However, the surface compatibility between the proteins had already emerged. This finding implies that specific protein–protein interactions can evolve without the action of direct natural selection.

  • Research Highlights |

    A comparative genomics study published in Nature Communications provides new insight into the genomic changes underlying the convergent evolution of sociality in spiders.

    • Dorothy Clyde
  • News & Views |

    Plasmids are well known for transferring antibiotic resistance genes between bacteria. A study in the clinic shows that evolutionary dynamics within the gut microbiomes of hospitalized patients lead to rapid adaptive changes, balancing the level of resistance that plasmids provide against the fitness costs that they impose on bacteria.

    • Rosanna C. T. Wright
    •  & Michael A. Brockhurst
  • Comments & Opinion |

    Global sequencing and surveillance capacity for SARS-CoV-2 must be strengthened and combined with multidisciplinary studies of infectivity, virulence and immune escape, in order to track the unpredictable evolution of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

    • Lorenzo Subissi
    • , Anne von Gottberg
    •  & Anurag Agrawal
    Nature Medicine 28, 1110-1115