Multilevel Selection in Models of Prebiotic Evolution: Compartments and Spatial Self-organization

  title={Multilevel Selection in Models of Prebiotic Evolution: Compartments and Spatial Self-organization},
  author={Paulien Hogeweg and Nobuto Takeuchi},
  journal={Origins of life and evolution of the biosphere},
In this paper we explore the impact of new levels ofselection in models of early evolution.We contrast two types of higher levels of selection. On the one hand we look at spatially explicitmodels of replicators in which, by a process of self-organization, new levels of selection ariseas large scale spatial patterns with a dynamics of their own. Alternatively externally imposedlevels of selection above the basic replicators are created by enclosing the replicators in vesicles.In this paper we… 

Multilevel Selection in Models of Prebiotic Evolution II: A Direct Comparison of Compartmentalization and Spatial Self-Organization

A direct comparison between spatial self-organization and compartmentalization in simulated RNA-like replicator systems shows that both mechanisms achieve the macroscopic stability of a replicator system through the evolutionary dynamics on mesoscopic entities that counteract that of microscopic entities.

Self-structuring in spatial evolutionary ecology.

It is shown that population viscosity is generally beneficial to cooperation, because cooperators can reap additional benefits from being clustered, and many results of kin selection theory can be recovered as emergent properties of spatial ecological dynamics.

Evolution of complexity in RNA-like replicator systems

The interdependence of information and organization can play an important role for the evolution of complexity, and the analysis of this diversification reveals that parasitic replicators, which have been thought to destabilize the replicator's diversity, actually promote the Evolution of diversity through generating a novel "niche" for catalytic replicators.

A PDE Model for Protocell Evolution and the Origin of Chromosomes via Multilevel Selection

The results suggest that dimerization, or the formation of a simple chromosome-like dimer replicator, can help to overcome the shadow of lower-level selection and work in concert with deterministic multilevel selection in protocells featuring high gene copy number.

Evolutionary Conflict Leads to Innovation: Symmetry Breaking in a Spatial Model of RNA-Like Replicators

The model highlights that evolution with implicit higher-level selection—i.e., as a result of local interactions and spatial patterning—is very flexible, and supports an RNA World by showing that complementary replicators may have various ways to evolve more complexity.

Motility at the Origin of Life: Its Characterization and a Model

It is suggested that processes on intermediate time scales could have already been operative in prebiotic systems and may have facilitated and constrained changes occurring in the faster- and slower-paced time scales of chemical self-individuation and evolution by natural selection, respectively.

Toward a theory of multilevel evolution: long-term information integration shapes the mutational landscape and enhances evolvability.

  • P. Hogeweg
  • Biology
    Advances in experimental medicine and biology
  • 2012
This work reviews results of several in silico evolutionary studies which examine the consequences of evolving the genetic coding, and the ways this information is transformed, while adapting to prevailing environments, and suggests that multilevel evolution leads to long-term information integration.



Multilevel evolution: replicators and the evolution of diversity

A re-exam ination of the stochastic corrector model

The present mathematical reformulation applies standard multitype branching processes to the full dynamics of the population of compartments and shows that compartment size cannot be too small or too large, because otherwise frequent random loss of replicators from compartments, or inefficient group selection, occur.

Group selection of early replicators and the origin of life.

Spatial gradients enhance persistence of hypercycles

Evolutionary self-organization of cell-free genetic coding

An individual-based stochastic model of interacting molecules in three-dimensional space is presented that allows the evolution of genetic coding to be analyzed explicitly and the necessity of spatial structure for the evolutionary stabilization of the genetic coding system is established.

Selection of catalysts through cellular reproduction

It is shown that cells with higher activity of membrane production evolve through cellular selection, as the first step, the evolution of catalysts within the proto-cells.

Multilevel processes in evolution and development: Computational models and biological insights

We argue that it is profitable (and necessary) to study biotic systems as multilevel systems in which the behavior of ‘higher levels’ is not only determined by the lower level processes but where the

Noisy clues to the origin of life

  • D. KrakauerA. Sasaki
  • Biology
    Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. Series B: Biological Sciences
  • 2002
Noise present in hostile early environments can increase the probability of faithful replication, by amplifying selection in finite populations, and two factors formerly considered inimical to the origin of life—developmental noise and drift in small populations—can in combination give rise to conditions favourable to robust replication.

Evolving Reaction-Diffusion Ecosystems with Self-Assembling Structures in Thin Films

It is shown how programmable matter simulations of experimentally relevant molecular in vitro evolution can be extended to include the influence of self-assembling flexible membranes.

The Stochastic Evolution of Catalysts in Spatially Resolved Molecular Systems

A tractable model is established which demonstrates that spatial effects can stabilize catalytic biological information and is analytically tractable for an dimensional space (simplex geometry), which also provides insight into evolution in normal Euclidean space.