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Mechanisms of Life History EvolutionThe Genetics and Physiology of Life History Traits and Trade-Offs$
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Thomas Flatt and Andreas Heyland

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199568765

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199568765.001.0001

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Genomic insights into life history evolution

Genomic insights into life history evolution

Chapter 2 Genomic insights into life history evolution
Mechanisms of Life History Evolution

Derek A. Roff

Oxford University Press

This chapter addresses two issues in which molecular analyses are important for our understanding of life history evolution. First, information on the genomic regulation of trade-offs – a central assumption of life history theory and evolutionary theory in general – promises to facilitate the production of mechanistic models of trade-offs, which may contribute to the development of theories that combine quantitative genetic and mechanistic approaches. Second, genomic analyses can address the question of the extent to which evolutionary trajectories are deterministic versus stochastic (the ‘skinning the cat problem’). In this regard, the chapter presents an experimental framework within which to investigate this problem.

Keywords:   life history, trade-off, developmental system drift, quantitative genetics, microarray

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