How do new alleles enter a population?

Genetics as it applies to evolution, molecular biology, and medical aspects.

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Casey
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How do new alleles enter a population?

Post by Casey » Thu Sep 11, 2008 3:04 am

I was going through past exam papers and came across this question

Explain how new alleles can enter and become established in a population.

Is it because of mutations?

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alextemplet
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Post by alextemplet » Thu Sep 11, 2008 12:27 pm

That's one way for new alleles to enter a population. Some scientists think they can also be introduced from other sources such as bacteria or viruses.
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Casey
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Post by Casey » Thu Sep 11, 2008 8:31 pm

Cool thanks! Also the process of meiosis that helps with variation, is that simply crossing over?

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Re: How do new alleles enter a population?

Post by wbla3335 » Fri Sep 12, 2008 6:56 am

Yes, recombination can create new alleles. Also, gene flow from other populations. So these three - new mutations, recombination, and gene flow - are the most common ways for a population to acquire new alleles. Horizontal, or lateral, transfer is also a mechanism in prokaryotes (nearly the entire genome of a species of Wolbachia has been found within the genome of Drosophila ananassae - so lots of new genes too, not just alleles).

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Post by Casey » Sun Sep 14, 2008 2:53 am

Cool thanks! Thats heaps to help :)

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