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#11
Old 07-18-2009, 04:43 AM
squealpiggy
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it has also been theorized that life forms have existed that didnt reproduce, of course they have been weeded out by evolution
One example given in the book is that of Splurge Weed. This seaweed doesn't reproduce in the sense of creating new generations from a single cell. All it does is grow. Parts of the structure will break off and float away. This is in contrast to the virtually identical bottle wrack weeds that reproduce from single cells (spores). The genetic advantage of spores is that each new bottle wrack plant is actually more closely related to the parent than for example parts of the splurge weed plant are to the same structure to which they are still attached.

Starting over from a single cell has obvious advantages from the point of view of the genes.
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#12
Old 07-18-2009, 04:12 PM
bbos
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Originally Posted by squealpiggy View Post
One example given in the book is that of Splurge Weed. This seaweed doesn't reproduce in the sense of creating new generations from a single cell. All it does is grow. Parts of the structure will break off and float away. This is in contrast to the virtually identical bottle wrack weeds that reproduce from single cells (spores). The genetic advantage of spores is that each new bottle wrack plant is actually more closely related to the parent than for example parts of the splurge weed plant are to the same structure to which they are still attached.

Starting over from a single cell has obvious advantages from the point of view of the genes.
wow that is very interesting, sea weed is another example of asexual reproduction. if you find the selfish gene intriguing then I suggest you read "What is life?" by Ed Regis, its not the original book by the famous physicist schordinger but a follow up to that, packed with a lot of insightful information.

thanks for creating this thread, prior to this I had no knowledge of this book "the selfish gene" but its defiantly a must read for me now.
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#13
Old 07-18-2009, 06:09 PM
squealpiggy
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Originally Posted by bbos View Post
wow that is very interesting, sea weed is another example of asexual reproduction. if you find the selfish gene intriguing then I suggest you read "What is life?" by Ed Regis, its not the original book by the famous physicist schordinger but a follow up to that, packed with a lot of insightful information.

thanks for creating this thread, prior to this I had no knowledge of this book "the selfish gene" but its defiantly a must read for me now.
I've now read two of Richard Dawkins' science books as well as the God Delusion and I have to say his science writing is better than his other stuff. The other science book I read was the Ancestor's Tale which was a little heavy in places but well worth it for the many fascinating insights. Did you know that in terms of genetic relatedness animals are closer to fungi than they are to plants? In fact fungi and plants are closer to each other than either of them are to plants!
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