Fact: current life forms are
both within and among species.
Evolution accounts for variation among living organisms.
[Variation occurs in time and space]
What is the "Theory of
Explanation of observed patterns of temporal & spatial variation
in terms of biological and physical processes.
Theory: an organized set of facts, principles, & hypotheses;
not a "guess", not "just a theory"
What is Evolutionary
Understanding the genetic basis of variation
1900 ~ 1953: analysis of phenotypes to infer nature of genotypes
> 1953: analysis of molecular nature of genes
> 2000: analysis of organization & function of genomes
Quantification & interpretation of organismal genetic variation
phenotypes, chromosomes, proteins, RFLPs, DNA sequences, DNA micro-satellites, genomes, etc.
Laboratory exercises introduce analytical methods.
Population Genetics models
changes in allele frequencies variation:
Single-locus models of short-term, small-scale change within species (micro-evolution)
Evolutionary Genetics analyzes multi-locus variation among species (macro-evolution)
Multi-locus / Genomic models of large-scale organization & long-term modification
Molecular Biology provides DNA data for analysis of evolution
Systematics provides evolutionary genealogies to explain organismal differences
Genomics characterizes gene content of species & organisms
Proteomics analyzes expression patterns in complete gene systems
Bioinformatics provides computational methods for extraction of data
Th. Dobzhansky (1900 - 1975):
"Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution."