Faculté des sciences et de médecine

A role for genetic accommodation in evolution?

Braendle, Christian ; Flatt, Thoams

In: BioEssays, 2006, no. 28, p. 868-873

Whether evolutionary change can occur by genetic assimilation, or more generally by genetic accommodation, remains controversial. Here we examine some of the experimental evidence for both phenomena. Several experiments in Drosophila suggest that assimilation is possible, and a new paper1 shows that a color polyphenism in the tobacco hornworm, Manduca sexta, can evolve by genetic accommodation.... More

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    Summary
    Whether evolutionary change can occur by genetic assimilation, or more generally by genetic accommodation, remains controversial. Here we examine some of the experimental evidence for both phenomena. Several experiments in Drosophila suggest that assimilation is possible, and a new paper1 shows that a color polyphenism in the tobacco hornworm, Manduca sexta, can evolve by genetic accommodation. We argue that genetic accommodation, including assimilation, is a plausible mechanism in evolution; however, more work is required to test how this mechanism acts and how often it is involved in evolutionary change.