Selection in Natural Populations

Selection in Natural Populations

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In 1974, Richard Lewontin published The Genetic Basis of Evolutionary Change, focusing enormous attention on protein variation as both a model of underlying genetic variation and a level of selection itself. In the twenty years since, scientific research has been shifted by the power of molecular biological techniques to explore the nature of variation directly at the DNA and gene levels. The "protein chapter" is coming to a close. In this book, Jeff Mitton explains the questions that geneticists hoped to answer by studying protein variation. He reviews the extensive literature on protein variation, describes the successes and failures of the research program, and evaluates the results of a rich and controversial body of research. The laboratory and field studies using protein polymorphisms revealed dynamic interactions among genotypes, fitness differentials, and fluctuating environmental conditions, and inadvertently wedded the fields of physiological ecology and population biology. Mitton's book is a useful analysis for all scientists interested in the genetic structure and evolution of more

Product details

  • Paperback | 252 pages
  • 152.9 x 232.7 x 11.9mm | 378.21g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Revised ed.
  • line figures, tables
  • 0195137868
  • 9780195137866

Review quote

"Mitton summarizes many studies of protein and genetic variation, asking fundamental questions in evolutionary biology: What is the unit of selection? What role does the unit of selection play in the amount of genetic variation detected using protein electrophoretic studies versus studies that directly examine DNA? How does selection impact the structure of the genome? What generalizations can be made about heterozygosity and multilocus interaction on fitness? . . . The book is mainly a summary of empirical data. Despite years of considerable effort by evolutionary biologists, there are very few general answers to accompany the long lists of questions. . . . [T]he book . . . will probably be of interest to new graduate students in the field and will serve as an introduction to a wide range of examples and as a reference to the literature."-The Quarterly Review of Biology "The book is well written, has a good balance of theory and fact, and the arguments are supported and illustrated by clear diagrams. It is short and enjoyable to read." -American Zoologist "In this advanced work, written for an audience with a background in genetics and evolutionary biology, Mitton examines the rich and controversial body of research relating molecular variation to selection in natural populations. . .A highly useful reference on the genetic structure and evolution of populations for population geneticists, evolutionary ecologists, and physiological ecologists." -Choiceshow more

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