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Revista chilena de historia natural

Print version ISSN 0716-078X


VALENZUELA, CARLOS Y. Within selection. Rev. chil. hist. nat. [online]. 2007, vol.80, n.1, pp.109-116. ISSN 0716-078X.

The synthetic theory of evolution proposes that biotic variations generated by mutation are mostly fixed, lost or maintained polymorphic by natural selection, with a marginal effect due to genetic drift. Based on the theory of autopoiesis some authors have proposed that selection is unable to explain most evolutionary changes, and natural or phenotype drift and epigenesis are the mechanisms that explain most of evolution. This view misunderstands basic evolutionary notions. Selection is a natural process that occurs with or without evolution; it does not explain evolution, it is a factor of the evolutionary process. The concept of autopoiesis implies an invariant condition of living beings, thus, it cannot explain and even less produce evolution conceived as ontogeny and phylogeny (highly variable processes). Natural drift does not solve this conceptual insufficiency; random drift is not a directional process; its expected evolutionary effect is zero

Keywords : autopoiesis; evolution; natural drift; neutral evolution; selection; synthetic theory.

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