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BACKGROUND The ability for an evolving population to adapt to a novel environment is achieved through a balance of robustness and evolvability. Robustness is the invariance of phenotype in the face of perturbation and evolvability is the capacity to adapt in response to selection. Genetic robustness has been posited, depending on the underlying mechanism,(More)
The adaptive landscape analogy has found practical use in recent years, as many have explored how their understanding can inform therapeutic strategies that subvert the evolution of drug resistance. A major barrier to applications of these concepts is a lack of detail concerning how the environment affects adaptive landscape topography, and consequently,(More)
The study of reverse evolution from resistant to susceptible phenotypes can reveal constraints on biological evolution, a topic for which evolutionary theory has relatively few general principles. The public health catastrophe of antimicrobial resistance in malaria has brought these constraints on evolution into a practical realm, with one proposed(More)
The concept of "deception" in fitness landscapes was introduced in the genetic algorithm (GA) literature to characterize problems where sign epistasis can mislead a GA away from the global optimum. Evolutionary geneticists have long recognized that sign epistasis is the source of the ruggedness of fitness landscapes, and the recent availability of a growing(More)
Much of the public lacks a proper understanding of Darwinian evolution, a problem that can be addressed with new learning and teaching approaches to be implemented both inside the classroom and in less formal settings. Few analogies have been as successful in communicating the basics of molecular evolution as John Maynard Smith's protein space analogy(More)
Flow diagrams are a common tool used to help build and interpret models of dynamical systems, often in biological contexts such as consumer-resource models and similar compartmental models. Typically, their usage is intuitive and informal. Here, we present a formalized version of flow diagrams as a kind of weighted directed graph which follow a strict(More)
Internationally accepted development indexes attempt to evaluate complex phenomenon, usually through the mathematical transformation of multiple factors into simpler information. These indexes permit global comparisons and facilitate rankings of countries' performances in a certain area. The early child development realm has been largely bereft of an(More)
Listed above are simplified descriptions of several past and current debates in the biological sciences. The points of departure in these conflicts lie not only in defining what the appropriate question is, but also in differences in approach to understanding certain phenomena. Such debates involve politics, can become personal and, consequently, can(More)
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