Biology as Poetry: Evolutionary Biology

Bacteriophage Ecology Group

Gene Flow

Equivalent concept to the Hardy-Weinberg exception that otherwise has been described as genetic migration.

Hardy-Weinberg equilibrium describes a default situation where evolution is not occurring and requires a total of five assumptions, no mutation, not genetic drift, no natural selection, no nonrandom mating, and no genetic migration. Genetic migration, in particular is not quite synonymous with the movement of especially animals from one place to another but instead is the movement of alleles from one population to another, that is, gene flow.

Gene flow occurs as a consequence of sexual process. This can be as associated with sexual reproduction or instead by various other means, such as those discussed under the heading of bacterial sex. See also the concepts of horizontal gene transfer, horizontal gene flow, lateral gene transfer, lateral gene flow, and introgression.

Gene flow between populations serves as a challenge to the biological species concept. Alternatively, for otherwise clonal organisms, it provides a means by which the biological species concept can have some applicability, i.e., with organisms making up the same species more likely to experience gene flow among themselves than they are with organisms making up different species.

For more on this topic, see Wikipedia  and Google.  Contact web master.  Return to home.