evolgen

Archives for January, 2007

The Vulva as a Child’s Toy

Hang with me here on this one. Marlowe’s Cousin Shakespeare’s Sister responds to a criticism of Nancy Pelosi with a little bit of feminist satire (reproduced below the fold): “No woman in the history of politics has used her womb like Nancy Pelosi.”. Shakes (I think that’s what the cool kids call her) Photoshops a…

Odorant Receptor Evolution

Larry Moran has been writing about olfactory receptors (1, 2, 3). The last two focus on work that has come out of Masatoshi Nei‘s group on the evolution of gene families — OR genes being a archetype of gene family evolution.

evolgen in the dead tree medium

I’ve been tagged: Make your own here.

Has it really been One Year?

One year ago today the current incarnation of evolgen at ScienceBlogs was launched. A lot has happened in that year — we junked DNA; we became terrified of manatees; we were voted the sexiest blog in all of scibloggistan by Nature; we were awarded the Nobel prizes for Physiology or Medicine, Peace, and Literature; we…

More about Human Populations

The post from yesterday was inspired by the news coverage surrounding the paper describing gene expression differences (DOI) between human populations. The original article uses neither the term ‘race’ nor the term ”Caucasian”. Instead, what would normally be called ‘races’ are referred to as ‘populations’ — aside from the single use of ‘ethnic groups’ in…

Mining for Statistical Significance

The curtain has been drawn and the secrets to data analysis revealed. Do you have a data set sitting around in need of analysis? Read this and learn how to find significant results somewhere — anywhere — in your data. Because negative results won’t get you published; and you won’t get hired/tenure if you don’t…

Mutations are the fuel that drives the engine of evolution. Without mutations there would be no variation upon which natural selection and other evolutionary forces could act. Furthermore, much of the theoretical results regarding evolutionary genetics depend on estimates of mutation rates. For example, Kimura showed that the rate of fixation of neutral mutations is…

Some Questions about Human Populations

First of all, do you consider the terms “Caucasian” and “of European ancestry” synonyms? How about the use of those terms in the popular press? If the two terms are equivalent in the common vernacular, which one do you prefer? What about the words “race” and “ethnicity”? Are they equivalent in the common vernacular? Should…

Keeping the Race Pure

Imagine you have two races — because calling them populations is just too damn PC — that are fixed for different alleles. Additionally, at loci were there are no fixed differences, alleles are segregating at different frequencies between the two races. In order to keep each of the races pure we must prevent any interbreeding…

Via Snail’s Tails comes this podcast (dated 05 January 2006 on this page) featuring E.O. Wilson. According to Aydin (I’m a blogger so I don’t fact check my sources) Wilson lays out the two fundamental laws of biology: All of the phenomena of biology are ultimately obedient to the laws of physics and chemistry. All…