Predicting evolution in bacteria

February 20, 2013 |

The following is an excerpt.

A new study found that similar, or even identical, mutations can occur during diversification in completely separate populations of E. coli evolving over more than 1,000 generations.

The new study involved 3 different populations of bacteria. At the start of the experiment, each population consisted of generalists competing for two different sources of dietary carbon (glucose and acetate), but after 1,200 generations they had evolved into two coexisting types each with a specialized physiology adapted to one of the foods. The researchers were able to sequence the genomes of populations of bacteria frozen at 16 different points during their evolution, and discovered a surprising amount of similarity in their evolution.

View the original article here: Is Evolution Now Predictable?