On 27 Jan 2013, at 13:19, Telmo Menezes wrote:

On Sun, Jan 27, 2013 at 12:25 PM, Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be> wrote:

On 25 Jan 2013, at 13:07, Telmo Menezes wrote:

It's a fascinating idea.
Groups selection seems to be a controversial issue with biologists, but it makes sense to me that evolution could work at the colony level, the same way it does for social insects. Even more easily, because bacteria reproduce asexually.

Well, many bacteria reproduces sexually,

Fair enough, but I believe that even for those that can, the primary mode of reproduction is still assexual. But ultimately I'm talking about a simplified "toy model" of what a bacteria really is, granted.

Personally I think that sexual reproduction comes from "unfinished digestion". Instead of eating your enemy, you keep a bit of its software, and integrate it in yourself. This can explain how "quick" the sexual eukaryotic cells happened. Virus might have been also important in the apparition of genetic diversity.

and I am not sure why group selection would be favored by non sexual reproduction. May be you can explain.

Because sexual reproduction promotes genetic diversity.

Exactly. That's my point.

So ultimately I'm proposing that kin selection is synergistic with group selection.

I totally agree.

Kin selection promotes altruism. The lower the diversity, the stronger the incentive, so the collective behaviours that group selection operates on are more likely to appear.


Also, *we* are bacteria colony, or bacteria/amoeba colony, so it seems to me that evolution can work at many levels simultaneously.


Even if we give a key role to the gene units, evolution has favored group of genes, and group of group of genes, etc.

Yes. I think the "selfish gene" hypothesis is a gross simplification of what's going on.




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