Saturday, September 19, 2015

Rapid Evolution in the News

CSU professor finds rapid evolution in research on guppies

"“We’re really lucky that we can work on guppies because they are (an) amazing study system in which in every stream in Trinidad they live, (and) evolve in parallel,” Hoke said. “As a neuroscientist, I am really interested in the brain and behavior. We could have equivalently done this study in something else, but we know that the behaviors are also rapidly changing.”

These changes may not necessarily be a good thing, according to Ghalambor. The guppies initial response from the cue was to grow fast, but over time, the evolutionary response became slower.

“Most of the attention has been given to when plasticity is adaptive, when it’s helpful,” Ghalambor said. “That’s what people focus on. There’s been much less attention to situations like this when it’s not always helpful, at least initially. So if you can’t solve the problem through plasticity, you can’t solve the problem by evolving.”

The research is significant for the environment and evolution, according to Corey Handelsman, a zoology graduate student. He is currently analyzing data on changes in body shape from different environments

“From a very basic sense, just the understanding (of) how organisms interact with the environment and change across environments has huge implications for everything, from our understanding of evolution on a basic level to understanding medicine,” Handelsman said. "
So here's what they actually found: first, they are still guppies. Second, they DEvolved, not evolved.

This is no different from the Grants' work on Darwin's Finches in the Galapagos: no positive evolution is seen; no new functions; no new organs, limbs or other novel creations. The changes in pigmentation switching are probably even cyclic, like even the beak shape of the "evolving" finches.

So we have to conclude that this article is a fraud, either intentional or unintentional.

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