This Article is About
genetics
dna replication
dna sequences
genetic variation
theory of evolution
genetic factor
alleles
heredity
passage of time
How Genetics Leads To Evolution
Join 1000's of Authors at StreetArticles Today!

Evolution is a gradual process that takes place in populations of organisms and selects the organisms that are best fit for their environment. Via natural selection, organisms with advantageous traits, which enhance their ability to survive, are able to reproduce. By reproducing, these advantageous traits are passed along to offspring who will use these traits to survive in their environment. Evolution can be seen across multiple generations as changes in frequency of genes and alleles, known as genetic drift, lead to genetic changes within populations of organisms.

The theory of evolution explains how groups of organisms change with the passage of time. These changes are made possible by genetic variation within a species. As not all individuals of a species are exactly the same, genetic differences within their DNA provide variation in morphology, physiology, and behavior. Depending on the environment, these variations among species can be favor, disfavor, or be neutral for the organism.

Heredity is a genetic factor important to evolution as it is a process which involves the passing of traits from parent to offspring. As traits are inherited from a parent, variation that disfavors the species’ ability to survive will not be passed down to offspring. However, organisms with advantageous traits and characteristics reproduce. Thus, the frequency of advantageous traits will increase over time. Variation displayed by individuals ultimately accumulates causing species to evolve.

Mutations are what cause variation among species and give rise to genetic diversity. Though mutations are rare, they occur randomly and are inevitable. With the development of new technology, we can now study evolution at the molecular level. This ability to examine DNA sequences allowed us to see what happens genetically during evolution. Mutations can occur as a result of errors in DNA replication, meiosis, radiation, viruses, and transposon. Changes in genomic sequence of DNA can occur from mutation in by single amino acid substitutions. Just one amino acid substitution can change the function of an entire protein. Much of molecular evolution has to do with the replacement of one protein sequence by another equivalent function. With these changes in genotype, phenotypic changes or observable characteristic changes occur. Phenotypes express the organism’s genes and influence the effect of environmental factors on the organism.

All life on Earth has originated and evolved from a common ancestor. By comparing DNA sequences between species, we can see how speciation and divergence has occurred. Life on Earth started as prokaryotes dominated the planet around 3-4 billion years ago. Over time more complex organisms have evolved and will continue to do so as long as there is an environment habitable for life.


Street Talk

No comments present
You May Also Like
Green Bettas - Colors And Genetics
When it comes to green bettas, there are a few specific types of green color that are possible with Siamese fighting fish. The reason for this is that all bettas can be either metallic or opaque depending on the genetics involved, and the metallic varieties can have green colors that…
By: Johnnie Thistlema in  Pets  >  Fish   Aug 17, 2011  
0
  Likes: 0

The Future Of Genetics And Public Health
Many public health programs aimed at the members of a community today have a greater focus on prevention through behavioral changes than through screening each person for potentially troublesome genes. The preference for behavioral changes could be due to a number of factors such as the costs of screening so…
By: Maria12 in  Health and Fitness  >  Medicine   Jul 30, 2012  
0
  Likes: 0

Jigsawing - A Creative Way to Learn Some Challenging Concepts
"I want to play a game." Unfortunately the above quote appearing with the word jigsaw is unlikely to bring you to a teaching strategy which is very successful in Biology. It is more likely to take to a series of movies which get exponentially worse the more of them they…
By: Col Harrison in  Reference and Education  >  Biology   May 28, 2011  
0
  Likes: 0

Role Play - A Strategy to Teach the Complex Process Of Protein Synthesis
How do you explain complex processes like protein synthesis to students? There are so many things going on that it can be very hard to focus on the correct sequence of events and the particular molecules involved. This is where we need to use multiple strategies to increase student understanding.…
By: Col Harrison in  Reference and Education  >  Biology   May 31, 2011  
0
  Likes: 0

Mutations: Why, How And Where
In genetics, mutations are changes in a genomic sequence of DNA or RNA. As a result of a mutation, there is usually a phenotypic difference and it may be sudden and random change that is unexpected. Although many can go unnoticed, some may alter the gene product or function entirely.…
By: Ashtin Alves in  Health and Fitness  >  Diseases   Jul 31, 2012  
0
  Likes: 0

Why the Epigenetics Approach on Cancer?
We are all derived from a set of instructions carried in the DNA inherited from the combination of our parents’ genetic material. However, the variation of gene expression in our phenotypes or “physical expressions” may not be solely due to alterations of our DNA sequence. The theory of epigenetics implies…
By: Viridiana Murillo in  Cancer   Mar 21, 2012  
0
  Likes: 0

Genes And Cancer
Genes A gene is not enough For many years it was thought that one could find "the" cure for cancer. Then he realized that every type of cancer was a story in itself. Today, most experts believe that there is only one approach that applies to everyone, even for apparently…
By: Antonio KAtende in  Cancer   Dec 27, 2011  
1
  Likes: 0

New Era Of Smart Photovoltaic Power Plant Comprehensive Partnership Between & Huawei
  Powerway had recently announced that an official cooperation agreement was entered with Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd, the leading global information and communications solution provider.   The union of the two strong partners desires to integrate Powerway’s PV tracking system with Huawei’s Fusion Solar Smart PV system and push out an advanced…
By: powerway in  Reference and Education  >  Biology   May 30, 2016  
0
  Likes: 0

Its Not All Roses - Google Has Announced Its Intentions to Spread Into the Social Sphere Aggresively
Luke Skywalker's lament was that his father used his powers for evil, in spite of the fact he felt the conflict within. Most of us have felt similar conflict at times. Life occasionally throws up opportunities for us to test our values and priorities. Are we driven by money, morals,…
By: Col Harrison in  Reference and Education  >  Biology   May 21, 2011  
0
  Likes: 0

Mutations Within Our Genetic Code
Mutations are a very common occurrence within DNA sequences of all living organisms. It is the primary source of evolution, causing new alleles and traits to arise from within a species. In addition to aiding evolution and reproduction, mutations can cause detrimental effects, such as disease or disorder within an…
By: Brendan1 in  Reference and Education  >  Biology   Sep 13, 2012  
0
  Likes: 0

Blue Eyes
For the most part, people admire colored eyes and have a tendency to stare at them. Nobody really thinks about where the eye color comes from or of any positive or negative factors that come from having colored eyes. The color of the iris is controlled by the amount of…
By: Emmanuel Gonzalez in  Reference and Education  >  Biology   Apr 18, 2012  
0
  Likes: 2

Facts About Hair
Hair is interesting to think about in terms of how it genetically varies from person to person. It is fascinating that kids in a family can have different hair characteristics, such as color, thickness, and straightness, and all of them having the same parents. Why do some people lose their…
By: Emmanuel Gonzalez in  Reference and Education  >  Biology   Aug 07, 2012  
0
  Likes: 0

Pyrosequencing, Broken Down
As our genome libraries and the need to conduct genetic screening continue to grow, newer and more innovative ways of sequencing also increase. One general term used for a more recently developed method is sequencing by synthesis. This is the method of sequencing a stretch of DNA by utilizing some…
By: Maria12 in  Reference and Education  >  Biology   Jul 30, 2012  
0
  Likes: 0

Why Distance Learning is A Perfect Option for Learners
Few of us get a calling. It’s a fact. Most of us simply have no idea what it is that we really want to do with our lives – whether it’s at 18, 28 or 38 – and it’s often the case that we fall into a role or career…
By: paul collins in  Reference and Education  >  Biology   Jun 04, 2012  
0
  Likes: 0

Those Who Understand Teach - How Peer Teaching Can Be Used Effectively In A Biology Class
It is Aristotle who is quoted as saying "those that know do, those that understand teach". Whilst those outside the teaching profession have come up with a less complimentary version of this quote, those who have experienced the joys and frustrations of teaching know exactly what Aristotle was talking about.…
By: Col Harrison in  Reference and Education  >  Biology   May 22, 2011  
0
  Likes: 0

Article Views: 1443    Report this Article