Re: Evolution being slow ...

From: Antoun Nabhan (
Date: Fri Apr 20 2001 - 16:23:55 PDT

At 06:36 PM 4/20/01 -0400, James Tauber wrote:
>One thing that has always fascinated me is the number of genotypic mutations
>that need to take place for the phenotype to have a beneficial change. It's
>not as if a single change to the DNA has an immediate benefit. You really

Huhwhat? There are Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms - one-base changes -
that account for significant phenotypic mutations like Huntington's Disease
and increased resistance to certain cancers. Likewise, a change in a
limited number - frequently 13 or fewer bases appear to account for
differences in "Continuum Traits" like blood pressure and ability to
metabolize cholesterol. So maybe there's a big probabilitistic
concatenation to get from a mouse to a human, but to get from an early
human to a healthier, stealthier human isn't necessarily so improbable.

I'm not a bioinformaticist, but I play one at conferences,

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Sun Apr 29 2001 - 20:26:02 PDT