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Biology 403: Evolutionary Biology

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Mark Fisher

on 27 August 2014

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Transcript of Biology 403: Evolutionary Biology

Get Top Hat!
Syllabus quiz on Thursday!
Know what's expected of you for the course
If it's on the syllabus, it's important to know
Vote for special topic lectures before Thursday
Viewing videos via Angel may require disabling blocked content on your browser
Welcome to Biology 403: Evolutionary Biology
Course Logistics
Course Logistics
HIV and Evolutionary Thinking
General Background
Topics we'll cover
Top Hat
Role of the textbook and Your Inner Fish
Will guide a lot of the lectures
Some lectures will adhere to the text much more so than others
Lecture material and assignments should make clear what I think is important
Pre-course evaluation
What is evolution?
What isn't evolution?
Microevolution
Macroevolution
Evolution Defined Formally
The process of change over time in the composition of a population
2 lectures that you vote for!
Additional Resources
You're not entitled to your opinion:
http://theconversation.com/no-youre-not-entitled-to-your-opinion-9978
How to design experiments
You will be asked to design experiments on exams and assignments
Elements of a good experiment
Must be able to state hypothesis
Hypothesis must be testable (i.e., make predictions)
Must be distinguishable from alternative hypotheses (which should also be stated)
Identify independent and dependent variable(s)
Identify controls/factors that must remain constant throughout experiment and/or across treatments
Describe in detail what the outcome of the experiment would (and would not!) tell you
Also, this is an important life skill to have
Vocabulary
Hypothesis-a proposed explanation for an observable phenomenon, or a reasoned prediction of a possible causal relationship among multiple phenomena
What is HIV, what does it do, and how is it spread?
Resistance and one-drug therapy
HIV and human evolution
Is this evolution? What conditions were necessary for evolution to happen?
Probably! (It's too early to actually detect significant allele frequency changes)
Heritable variation in reproductive success
Theory- a well-substantiated explanation of some aspect of the natural world, based on knowledge that has been repeatedly confirmed through observation and experimentation
Gene- a unit of heredity that is transferred from a parent to offspring and is held to determine some characteristic of the offspring
Locus-the position of a gene or mutation on a chromosome
Allele-a version of a gene
Genotype-the combination of alleles an individual carries
Phenotype-the trait (or suite of traits) an individual exhibits
Learning Strategies
Don't write what you see on the screen!
It's there for you to write as many times as you want later; what I say about the text is not, and you will miss that if you're writing
When reading or studying for exams, WRITE TO LEARN!
Instead of highlighting or copying things from the text or papers, write summaries of sections or chapters in your own words; it will show you what specifically you don't understand
In-class exercise
In groups of 4, design an experiment that would demonstrate that there is an evolutionary trade-off on male guppies for gaudiness, mediated by female preference and predation pressure
Must be able to state hypothesis
Hypothesis must be testable (i.e., make predictions)
Must be distinguishable from alternative hypotheses (which should also be stated)
Identify independent and dependent variable(s)
Identify controls/factors that must remain constant throughout experiment and/or across treatments
Describe in detail what the outcome of the experiment would (and would not!) tell you
A change in allele frequency in a population over time
Natural selection is not the only thing that can cause this!
It's time for some CSI-style sleuthing!
Top Hat test question: if Trahan was not infected by Schmidt's patient, what would the phylogenetic tree look like?
Why does HIV kill (re-visited)?
Natural selection just happens. The future is not considered.
CCR-5 Δ 32 confers resistance to HIV and is relatively frequent in Northern Europe
A CD4 allele (T) common among Kenyans increases the risk of infection
Intermediate virulence optimizes viral transmission of HIV
Within the body, strains are competing with one another
Patients with (mutant) strains of HIV that can utilize CXCR 4 (a receptor in naive T cells) lose T-cells more rapidly
The "New Synthesis" (Modern Evolutionary Biology)
Mechanism of evolution
Genetics
Genetics + evolution by natural selection = population genetics
Speciation
Developmental biology
Geology
Sir Charles Lyell
Uniformitarianism
Jean-Baptiste Lamarck
Inheritance of acquired characteristics
Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace
Jointly published in 1858
Natural selection is main mechanism of evolution
Origin of Species 1859 (Darwin)
Gregor Mendel
Published in1866
Rediscovered in 1900
Mechanism of inheritance
R. A. Fisher
Quantitative genetics
Genetics of continuous traits
Father of modern statistics (ANOVA, maximum likelihood)
Sexual selection, mimicry, computational biology, the list goes on
First law of inheritance (segregation):
The two alleles of a gene segregate (separate from each other) during gamete formation and end up in different gametes


Second law of inheritance (independent assortment):
Separate genes (for separate traits) are passed independently of one another from parents to offspring
Sewall Wright
Inbreeding coefficients and population divergence
Relative roles of mutation, selection, drift
Adaptive landscapes
J.B.S. Haldane

Relative roles of selection and mutation
Mutational load
Estimation of human mutation rates and the human linkage map
Theodosius Dobzhansky
"Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution"
Studied genetic isolation mechanisms of
Drosophila pseudoobscura

Different populations had different chromosomal inversions
Ernst Mayr
Biological species concept
Stephen Jay Gould
Heterochrony-developmental change in the timing of events
Punctuated equilibrium
1936-1947 (with some stragglers)
A union of several disparate fields of biology under the paradigm of evolution
Full transcript