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Lab yeast go multicellular?

  1. Jun 25, 2011 #1

    Pythagorean

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  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 25, 2011 #2
  4. Jun 25, 2011 #3

    Ryan_m_b

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    Re: Lab yeast go multicellular!?

    Interesting, I wonder how the centrifugation represents real life? Perhaps strong tides or water pressure?
     
  5. Jun 28, 2011 #4
    Re: Lab yeast go multicellular!?

    That is just amazing.
     
  6. Jun 28, 2011 #5

    Evo

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    Re: Lab yeast go multicellular!?

    I thought the centrifugation was only to collect the heaviest globs of cells. Thereby selecting for those clusters.
     
  7. Jun 29, 2011 #6

    Borek

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    Re: Lab yeast go multicellular!?

    It doesn't, it just adds kind of selection. Evolution doesn't care about whether selection has any real life meaning, it just follows higher survivability path.
     
  8. Jun 29, 2011 #7

    Ryan_m_b

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    Re: Lab yeast go multicellular!?

    Exactly, the point was if this is how multicellularity has evolved in the lab then how does this experiment compare to how it could have evolved in the real world.
     
  9. Jun 29, 2011 #8
    Re: Lab yeast go multicellular!?

    Is it not the usual supposition that multi-cellular life evolved because it improves the facility of individual genes to achieve maximum self-replication? The suggestion then is that, given enough time, the lab based yeast might have achieved this in any case, it just might have taken a few million years longer than the scientists had. Introducing an artificial environmental pressure just jockeyed the process along a bit. The point of the exercise, perhaps, was not to explain exactly how multi-cellular life actually first evolved, but just to highlight the fundamental possibility for it to do so given the right circumstances, and perhaps to provide a small answer to those who like to claim that evolutionary theory is not falsifiable and thus not scientific.
     
  10. Jun 29, 2011 #9

    Ryan_m_b

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    Re: Lab yeast go multicellular!?

    It may or may not have been the point of the experiment to study mechanisms by which single celled organisms can evolve multicellularity but whenever it comes to experiments like this I tend to be overly critical and think "well ok but what's that got to do with real life?".
     
  11. Jun 29, 2011 #10
    Re: Lab yeast go multicellular!?

    The thought that occurred to me reading the piece that Pythagorean linked to is this point that no-one is more sceptical about the work of any serious scientist than are other serious scientists. Maybe I am wearing rose coloured spectacles, but it does seem to me that the dialogue between William Ratcliff and his team on the one hand, and Neil Blackstone and his team on the other might lead this research towards some scientifically robust and genuinely worthwhile conclusion.
     
  12. Jun 29, 2011 #11

    Pythagorean

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    From a theoretical biology point of view, this is very interesting to me whether it reflects evolutionary history or not; it tells more about the living system dynamics (especially if changes in expression are observed and correlated with the transition)

    More interesting to a theoretician, it allows us to come closer to making quantitative generalizations about concepts like "multicellular".
     
  13. Jun 29, 2011 #12

    Ryan_m_b

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    Re: Lab yeast go multicellular!?

    I do find it interesting, just wonder how it relates to evolution IRL.
     
  14. Jun 29, 2011 #13

    Pythagorean

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    Re: Lab yeast go multicellular!?

    For me, it sheds light on the transition between unicellular and multicellular. Not how it went, but more data to constrain how it must have went.
     
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