Darwin evolutionary theory, Darwinism, evolution, evolutionary creativity, Evolutionary innovation, gene circuits, genotype networks, Hox gene network, natural selection, neutral mutations, phenotypic traits, survival of the fittest
If this article were a thing, I would gleefully rub my hands before picking it up – it is one of the most fascinating articles for me. In my eight standard, I got really interested in the concepts of Darwinian evolution – I wrote so much on the survival of the fittest in a class test that my biology teacher gave me a mark extra than the rest (who had written well too). Enough narcissism – I should talk about where the science has come on the theory of evolution. The theory of the survival of the fittest (roughly) says that the fittest survive – the species/individuals who can adapt to changes in the environment will survive and who cannot adapt will perish. Changes in genetic makeup, according to Darwinian logic, happen through gene-mutations: mutations can sometimes give rise to new evolutionary changes and in time perhaps the rise of a new species; mutations can lead to adaptive changes; or mutations can be deleterious. Would that mean that evolution is random or that the direction of evolution is determined by random mutations?
If you look at the variety around you, the sheer complexity may not seem to be only the act of some random mutations. There is more to evolution that just genes – the connections between genes or gene circuits play an important role. For example, there are 40 genes in the circuits of both snake and human. What makes these two species different is the wiring of this so-called Hox-gene-circuit. If you thought “wow” after reading this, you must check out the article: