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Evolution through Genetic Exchange$
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Michael L. Arnold

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199229031

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199229031.001.0001

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Humans and associated lineages

Humans and associated lineages

(p.164) Chapter 9 Humans and associated lineages
Evolution through Genetic Exchange

Michael L. Arnold

Oxford University Press

This chapter reviews findings relating to the effect of genetic exchange on the evolution of the human lineage and lineages of organisms with which we interact (e.g. disease vectors, food sources). It considers fossil and genetic data that suggest gene flow between various archaic taxa, and between archaic taxa and anatomically modern Homo. It shows that the disastrous effects of natural hybridization and lateral gene transfer in disease and disease-vector evolution. The chapter also considers the highly beneficial results from the same processes in producing food products, drugs, and even clothing. It concludes with a discussion demonstrating that Homo sapiens has played an active role in producing new strands of the web of life.

Keywords:   genetic exchange, evolution, Homo sapiens, gene flow, hybridization

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