Thursday, October 11, 2007

Sean Carroll on the cutting edge of evolution in action?
A gene divided reveals the details of natural selection

MADISON -- In a molecular tour de force, researchers at the University of Wisconsin-Madison have provided an exquisitely detailed picture of natural selection as it occurs at the genetic level.

Writing today (Oct. 11, 2007) in the journal Nature, Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator Sean B. Carroll and former UW-Madison graduate student Chris Todd Hittinger document how, over many generations, a single yeast gene divides in two and parses its responsibilities to be a more efficient denizen of its environment. The work illustrates, at the most basic level, the driving force of evolution.