THE MODERN SYNTHESIS

The combination of the principles of population genetics and Darwinian evolutionary theory is called modern synthesis. Modern synthesis comes from the study of genetics. It explains why variations exist among individuals. It also explains how they pass to the future generations.some variations give an advantage to individuals. Therefore, muse selects them through natural selection. Thus genetic variations are important in evolution. A large number of genetic variations can be produced in population. Even the simple principles of inheritance of Gregor Mendel provide for remarkable variation. Crossing over, multiple alleles, and mutations increase number of variation. Therefore. no two individuals are genetically identical. Chance produces different combinations of genes. Therefore, some Individuals are better able to survive and reproduce in a given environment than others.

I. Population genetics: Population genetics was another important turning point in the evolutionary theory. Population genetics emphasizes on the genetic variation within populations. It recognizes the importance of quantitative characters.


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  1. Mendalism: Mendalism and Darwinism were reconciled with the progress in population genetics in the 1930s.
  2. Modern synthesis: The genetic basis of variation and natural selection were worked out. Thus a comprehensive theory of evolution was formed. It is known as the modern synthesis. It was developed in the early 1940s. Modern synthesis integrated the discoveries and ideas from many different fields. These fields are paleontology, taxonomy, biogeography, and population genetics. Thus it is also called a synthesis.

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