Questions tagged [evolution]

Changes in the heritable attributes of populations of organisms over time. The mechanisms of evolution are mutation, migration, drift, and selection.

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renal portal system

I am a high school student and In my textbook it is written that Mammals don't have renal portal system because they have four chambered heart that's why they don't need it ,I understand that the four ...
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Are genetic crosses between asexual organisms possible?

To my knowledge (Please correct me if I am wrong), genetic basis is the key in defining species. When we encounter an unknown species, we can sequence it's genome and compare the genome with other ...
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What is the evolutionary advantage with two lungs (kidneys)?

What is the evolutionary advantage with two lungs (kidneys)? Most living beings only have one heart, one stomach. Most internal organs are not doubled and if one lung fails it is not exactly quite ...
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Did strong ocean and river currents cause the Cambrian Explosion?

There were high temperatures causing strong water currents in the Cambrian period 500 million years ago. Did the 5 basic body shapes of large living organisms come into being to minimise resistance ...
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Have we reached the technology to 'drive' evolution artifically?

Previously our evolution was due to circumstance, we can trace back all our body features to overcome some 'challenge' our ancestors were faced with. Now, in the modern time, with that large ...
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What's the survival benefit of blue plants?

I'm working on a science-fiction worldbuilding setting and have been trying to find out what the survival benefits are of blue in plants, like this or this. I have researched this but most of the ...
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Why are some organisms able to regenerate?

Why can sponges, cnidarian polyps and planaria regenerate if broken up, but other animals e.g. humans and phylum chordata cannot?
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What were all most important hypotheses in hexapodal evolution and which one is currently most objective?

To me, the most common hypotheses about hexapodal evolution concern developement of wings: Paranotal, Epicoxal, Endite-exite, Paranota plus leg gene recruitment However, my task is to write an essay ...
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Evolution: Can the genotype frequencies change, but the allele frequencies remain constant?

If a population isn't evolving because it's in Hardy-Weinberg (HW) equilibrium, then I know that both genotype and allele frequencies must stay constant. My question is, can evolution still not occur ...
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When is it better for a gene to cause a biased sex ratio?

Because genes are selfish and want to maximise their transmission from generation to generation, if they can distort a population's sex ratio, isn't it always in their interest to cause a biased sex ...
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Why aren't there any transitional animals today?

You have probably heard this question before and in different formats. Usually, it is used as a "proof" to disprove the theory of evolution. I understand that the apes we descended from are ...
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Is it possible there were multiple origins of life? And, if so, why did the one which became the common ancestor between all organisms prevail?

I have learned that all currently-living organisms come from a common ancestor, which I theoretically understand. However, my professor in a class mentioned that there is a chance that there were ...
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Can we assume to face more mutations of a virus with a rising degree of vaccinated individuals in the population? [duplicate]

Can we assume to face more mutations of a virus with a rising degree of vaccinated individuals in the population? And if so, what are the reasons for this? So, I am comparing two scenarios: A) No ...
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Common ancestry of our cells to the first unicellular cell

If we start the chapter of life with low fidelity self replicating RNAs forming exactly identical copies of themselves, which then later evolved to form the first primordial basic cells which further ...
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Is the General Cirrate Octopus Form the Basalmost Octopoda Morphology?

The reason I ask this is due to the distinctive internal mantle shells of cirrina, of which the incerrata have stylets that are a remnant of the cirrate shell. Along with this, both cirrate octopuses ...
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Where does Darwin state his “principle of multiple utility”?

I have never heard of Darwin's 'principle of multiple utility', but several papers refer to it. For example, from Darwin at the molecular scale: selection and variance in electron tunnelling proteins ...
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How do complex features evolve, that takes many steps to evolve which are not beneficial mid evolution?

I have questions regarding multi-step evolution: how does evolution evolve complex features that has many components and take many steps to evolve, in which at each step the semi-finished product is ...
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Is the tip of the temporal lobe the “top” of the brain neural tube?

The neural tube that forms the central nervous system forms around a cavity that becomes the ventricular system. Is the end of the lateral ventricles in the temporal lobe the top of this original ...
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Do house mites feel pain? [duplicate]

I was wondering three questions about house mites. -When we kill them by washing our hands, washing our clothes, aerating our bed and our room, do they suffer ? -And if they ever feel pain, what is ...
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Is eating cooked food an evolved behavior or rather an intelligent one, passed down via culture?

I was just eating a rather rare steak when I started wondering whether eating foods cooked was something I would instinctively want to do if the practice hadn't been taught to me. So, is cooking food ...
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What is the meaning of 'primary' and 'secondary' sympatric speciation in this paper?

Sympatric Speciation in the Genomic Era. Both terms are used throughout the paper. I'm not able to make sense of these terms in the contexts used. I've also heard the terms 'primary' and 'secondary' ...
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Do humans have any biological adaptations to eating cooked food?

Humans have been cooking food for at least tens of thousands of years. The presumed reason why cooking took root in nearly all human cultures is that cooked food is easier to digest. However, cooking ...
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What is the biology behind human population dynamics?

A paradox: Human population growth looks a lot like a simple logistic growth pattern. But the simplest interpretation of logistic growth doesn't seem to fit. Is this peculiar to humans, or does it ...
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Does Darwin's Theory of Evolution refute Terence McKenna theory “Stoned Ape” theory of human evolution?

I haven't read it but I'm asking for a quick answer. As far as I know, Terence McKenna's theory of evolution in humans main concept is that a hominid has tried in their diet psilocybin mushrooms, and ...
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How do we determine the common ancestor of a species? [closed]

I have seen a lot of articles about common ancestors. But I didn't find any perfect articles that said about the evidence of common ancestor.
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Are there any medical treatments which no longer work because humans have evolved?

(Not sure if this should be on the medicine SE) There've been plenty of medicines that no longer work because the target pathogen has evolved resistance, e.g. penicillin is no longer an effective ...
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Predators on the Galapagos

I understand that in many isolated islands, such as the Galapagos, there are no large predators. I find this observation interesting because it has been suggested that the lack of predators unleashes ...
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The Perfect Predator? [closed]

I’m not a biology major or even studying it in any way so I apologize if this makes no sense. I’m curious, if say the Jurassic Park team came up to you and asked you to genetically engineer the ...
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Why does human facial and head hair continue to grow?

Many people can grow extremely long head hair and facial hair. Are there evolutionary theories as to why this is the case? It seems like having long hair could be a disadvantage, and extremely long ...
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How does evolution eliminate problems that only cause diseases late in life?

Humans are vulnerable to heart attacks and strokes. Our modern diet leads to atherosclerosis, this already starts at a young age but it doesn't cause symptoms until an important artery is almost ...
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Has human intelligence evolved as a costly male signal?

In this video at 42:06, Daniel Dennett posits that our big brains are: The human artifice or version of the peacock's tail. Peacocks have sexual dimorphism - it's males who exhibit the costly signal ...
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Why is cannibalism not an evolutionary stable situation?

In the 'the selfish gene' Dawkins writes (page 109): "The reason lions do not hunt lions is that it would not be an ESS (evolutionary stable situation) for them to do so. A cannibal strategy would be ...
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Is it likely that humans will evolve to be less affected by dangerous food additives or tobacco smoking chemicals?

I recently had a discussion with a few colleagues about food additives and there were two major "arguments" about how some of these affect the human body in the long term: some food ...
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Why do mammals rarely have eyespots?

An eyespot is a marking to mimic the eyes. Many examples of eyespots can be found in fish, reptiles (including birds), and insects. Recently Radford 2020 has shown that artificial eyespots can reduce ...
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Did mammals evolve from something with eusociality?

Eusociality (from Greek εὖ eu "good" and social), the highest level of organization of sociality, is defined by the following characteristics: cooperative brood care (including care of ...
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Is it plausible that strict lockdowns made it more likely for the new variant of COVID to have emerged?

My idea is that strict lockdowns put greater evolutionary pressure on the coronavirus by restricting oppurtunities to be transmitted, meaning that a faster-spreading variant had much less competition. ...
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Why have humans evolved conciousness?

Why did humans/animals evolve to become self-aware of their own thoughts. That is, why don't humans act and compute like a machine, or walking zombie. In my mind, such creatures would still be as ...
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Does a critical mass of infected individuals exist after which mutations will overtake vaccination attempts?

As we know, all organisms have a probability to undergo mutations when they replicate. For every infected individual with the Covid-19 their bodies are environments in which the SARS-CoV-2 may mutate ...
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Balancing selection vs introgression?

Balancing selection can maintain polymorphisms in natural populations for extended periods of evolutionary time. However, in this paper, Dannemann et al. 2016 identify three archaic haplotypes in the ...
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Evolution at a glacial pace: how does it work? [duplicate]

Some trees are very long-lived, such as the Great Basin Bristlecone Pine and the Giant Sequoia (up to 4,800 years old). How does natural selection and evolution affect such long-lived organisms? ...
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Does the radula sac in any mollusc serve a purpose other than sheathing the radula?

According to Barne Gat Shellfish: When not feeding the radula is retracted into this chamber which protects the mouth from the sharp teeth of the radula. Does the radula sac serve any other purpose?
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At what rate do chromosomal rearrangements occur?

How often do chromosomal rearrangements occur? I am interested about these kind of chromosomal rearrangements that are passed on to the descendants, i.e. germ line chromosomal rearrangements. The ...
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What is neutral theory of evolution?

The question is not about the very basics, but more about where the line separating the neutral theory from the rest of population genetics lies. One often reads/hears claims that "the findings ...
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Why/How do Cyanobacteria Produce Toxins?

I've been doing some research on the versatility of nitrogen-fixing cyanobacteria, particularly of the genus Anabaena, and I often run into safety hazards and have to add extra steps to my procedures ...
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An online tree of life with extinct species present?

There are awesome online phylogenetic trees such as OneZoom. But they all only list living species. I want to see dinosaurs between birds and crocodiles. I wanna see that humans are reptiliomorphs ...
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What does the 4DTv (four-fold synonymous) mean?

I saw this sentence "4DTv is the transversion rate at fourfold synonymous codon positions, and ranged from zero (for recently duplicated paralogs) to ~0.5 (for paralogs derived from an ancient ...
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Why mammals don't have renal portal system

I am a high school student and I am a little confused why mammals don't have renal portal system?, some books says that because we have four chambered heart, so our blood is filtered more effectively ...
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1answer
37 views

Why does the DNA of Bacillus subtilis not contain DNA families of 20-37 members?

I am reading the book "Molecular biology of the Cell, 6th edition" and in chapter one page 18 the following figure is included I am presuming this figure represents all genes within the ...
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About what percent of mutations are not adaptive?

Many popular texts that discuss evolution and natural selection often mention that many (or most) mutations are bad (not adaptive). Have there been any studies on what the rough percentages are? (E.g....

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