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Acta Biológica Colombiana

Print version ISSN 0120-548X

Abstract

LOPEZ CARRASCAL, CAMILO ERNESTO. New Pillars of Evolutionary Theory in the Light of Genomics. Acta biol.Colomb. [online]. 2011, vol.16, n.3, pp.89-102. ISSN 0120-548X.

The evolutionist theory proposed by Darwin is one of the fundamental pillars in biology. Darwin’s theory was solidified with the Modern synthesis of evolutionary biology thanks to the rediscovery of Mendel’s work, which laid the genetic basis of heredity. In recent years, great progress has been acquired in the sequencing and analyses of complete genomes, which have provided several elements to discuss some Darwinists tenets of evolution. The evidence of gene duplication and whole-genome duplication, the horizontal gene transfer and the endosymbiosis process question the idea that evolution proceeds through the gradual accumulation of infinitesimally small random changes. The new evidence of neutral selection on the genomics context reveals other mechanisms of evolution not necessarily related with the idea of progress or with an adaptationist program as was originally stated by the Darwin’s theory. In this paper, I present these and other concepts such as gene regulation, molecular mechanisms of development and some environmental aspects (epigenesis and phenotypic plasticity) as starting points to think in the necessity to update the evolutionary theory which in my opinion should be more inclusive, pluralistic and consistent with our current knowledge.

Keywords : adaptacionismo; evolución; genómica; neutralismo; selección natural.

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