natural selection


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nat·u·ral se·lec·tion

"survival of the fittest," the principle that in nature those individuals best able to adapt to their environment will survive and reproduce, whereas those less able will die without progeny, and the genes carried by the survivors will increase in frequency. This principle is heuristic rather than rigorous because it cannot be tested, the outcome being tautologous with the empiric definition of fitness.

natural selection

n.
The process in nature by which, according to Darwin's theory of evolution, organisms that are better adapted to their environment tend to survive longer and transmit more of their genetic characteristics to succeeding generations than do those that are less well adapted.

natural selection

A general term for a shift in the frequency of a gene’s allelic variants within a population over time, which reflects the differential reproductive success of individual genotypes.

nat·u·ral se·lec·tion

(nă-chŭr'ăl sĕ-lek'shŭn)
Colloquially, "survival of the fittest," the principle that in nature those individuals best able to adapt to their environment will survive and reproduce, whereas those less able will die without progeny, and the genes carried by the survivors will increase in frequency. This principle is heuristic rather than rigorous because it cannot be tested, the outcome being tautologous with the empiric definition of fitness.

natural selection

The Darwin-originated principle that individuals of a species happening, by normal genetic rearrangement or by mutation, to possess inherited characteristics with survival value relative to a particular environment are more likely to survive long enough to reproduce and increase the numbers having these characteristics. Natural selection occurs quickly in rapidly reproducing micro-organisms. (Charles Darwin, 1809–82, English naturalist).

natural selection

the mechanism, proposed by Charles DARWIN, by which gradual evolutionary changes take place. Organisms which are better adapted to the environment in which they live produce more viable young, so increasing their proportion in the population; thus particular characteristics are ‘selected’ and others are lost. Such a mechanism depends on the variability of individuals within the population. Such variability arises through MUTATION and other genetic events, the beneficial variants being preserved by NATURAL SELECTION.
References in periodicals archive ?
Ross: You mentioned the birth of child is natural selection. In your view did natural selection really end?
A Darwinian state would be a Fascist state." (11) Barash came to a similar conclusion that it is inappropriate to think we can derive ethical lessons from evolution: "The harsh reality is that evolution by natural selection is a marvelous thing to learn about, but a terrible one to learn from." (12) Philosopher Daniel Dennett is even more graphic and terse when he called social Darwinism "an odious misapplication of Darwinian thinking in defense of political doctrines that range from callous to heinous." (13)
What are the contexts for reasoning about natural selection that we would like students to recognize?
Meanwhile at 42West, a high-powered entertainment public relations firm, a letter to the news media that identified Natural Selection as handling the Preservation Hall documentary at South by Southwest is now being described - in conversations conditioned on anonymity to minimise conflict- as having been in error.
The scientific community has never monolithically regarded natural selection as the sole mechanism of evolution.
As part of Newcastle ScienceFest 09, Keith Thomas will present Natural Selection Beer - Talk and Taste on March 11, 6.30pm (free but advance booking necessary) where he will trace the story of Britain's native drink - and those attending will be able to sample the new beer.
Evolution based on spontaneous mutation, and natural selection of the fittest variants, is an incredibly simple process.
In chapter 4 Kitcher responds to Behe's claims that certain molecular machines could not have been built up in stages by natural selection. He says that at the heart of the ID movement are two types of argument, both designed to question the thought that natural selection scales up, from microevolution on a short time scale, to macroevolution on a large time scale.
This biography concentrates on the crucial two decades in Darwin's life between his famous voyage and the 1859 publication of the first edition of On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection. As such, it concentrates on the research he did during this time, a subject too often neglected.
The modern industrial nationalism in Europe that occurred during the latter part of the 19th century coincided with the emergence of Social Darwinism which is the synthesis of the old ideas by Joseph de Gobineau (Essay on inequality) and Charles Darwin (Evolution by natural selection).
The appendices clarify insights into a variety of topics, from the possible use of the Celtic Cross as a navigational tool to a thorough chastisement of the Darwinian theory of macroevolution (while acknowledging that microevolution, as seen through small species changes due to simple natural selection, does exist).
It is impossible to understand Hitler's monstrous views apart from his belief in natural selection applied to races.