New study finds that advantageous traits don’t easily infuse in populations

A new study in Nature (September 30,2010) has found something interesting. (H/T WgButler777)


Our work provides a new perspective on the genetic basis of adaptation. Despite decades of sustained selection in relatively small, sexually reproducing laboratory populations, selection did not lead to the fixation of newly arising unconditionally advantageous alleles. This is notable because in wild populations we expect the strength of natural selection to be less intense and the environment unlikely to remain constant for ~600 generations.”

Consequently, the probability of fixation in wild populations should be even lower than its likelihood in these experiments. This suggests that selection does not readily expunge genetic variation in sexual populations, a finding which in turn should motivate efforts to discover why this is seemingly the case.”

What does it mean?

It means that good traits that evolve in a single individual do not necessarily “take” in the entire population, so that will live on in successive generations. If the accumulation of beneficial mutations is required for Darwinism to create all of these new body plans and organ types, then what are we to make of the creative power of Darwinian mechanisms?

Read more about it here at Uncommon Descent.

One thought on “New study finds that advantageous traits don’t easily infuse in populations”

  1. The finding makes sense– something that’s handy and gives an advantage won’t *wipe out* those without the advantage, just gives an edge; from a sensibility perspective, an advantage might open a weakness, and if this week’s advantage gets spread through the entire population and then something shows up that makes that advantage a *disadvantage*….


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