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Gene variant for which genetic drift has a more powerful impact on frequency than natural selection.
A neutral allele provides neither benefits nor costs relative to the average fitness conferred by alleles found at the same locus within a population. A neutral mutation provides a new allele to a population but one which provides no more or less fitness benefits than the allele it mutationally replaces.
Note that the smaller a population the stronger genetic drift and therefore the greater potential that an allele will be neutral. That is, even alleles that are beneficial or detrimental at higher population sizes can be neutral at lower population sizes and vice versa.
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