Blute Blog

Blute's blog about evolutionary theory: biological, sociocultural and gene-culture.

Archive for April 2022

Reticulation in Evolution

leave a comment »

I have known and liked Nathalier Gontier for years and respect her work in general but on the importance of “reticulation” in evolution I am afraid she is just plain wrong. For the sake of argument, imagine that there was a single origin of life. Then if hybridization were as common as speciation, there would currently be a single species and the history of life would resemble one of those stage theories of history! Instead there are millions of species. Obviously, speciation has been more common than hybridization. To be sure both hybridization and reticulation in the form of horizontal gene transfer (dragged by a viral parasite for example) do occur. However, the weight of current evidence and opinion is that they are relatively uncommon. Horizontal gene transfer implies that evolutionary trees have some cobwebs not that they are in any sense outdated.

Written by Marion Blute

April 6, 2022 at 11:11 am

Posted in Uncategorized