The gene-centered view of evolution, gene selection theory, or selfish gene theory holds that adaptive evolution occurs through the differential survival of competing genes, increasing the frequency of those alleles whose phenotypic effects successfully promote their own propagation, with gene defined as "not just one single physical bit of DNA all replicas of a particular bit of DNA distributed throughout the world". The proponents of this viewpoint argue that, since heritable information is passed from generation to generation almost exclusively by genetic material, natural selection and evolution are best considered from the perspective of genes.
This is in contrast to the organism-centered viewpoint adopted historically by biologists. Proponents of the gene-centered viewpoint argue that it permits understanding of diverse phenomena such as altruism and intragenomic conflict that are otherwise difficult to explain from an organism-focused perspective.
The gene-centered view of evolution is a synthesis of the theory of evolution by natural selection, the particulate inheritance theory, and the non-transmission of acquired characters. It states that those genes whose phenotypic effects successfully promote their own propagation will be favorably selected in detriment to their competitors. This process produces adaptations for the benefit of genes that promote the reproductive success of the organism, or of other organisms containing the same gene (kin altruism and green-beard effects), or even only its own propagation in detriment to the other genes of the genome (intragenomic conflict).
Other articles related to "view of evolution, views, evolution":
... Prominent opponents of this gene-centric view of evolution include evolutionary biologist Ernst Mayr, paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould, biologist and anthropologist David Sloan Wilson, and philosopher Elliott Sober ... Writing in the New York Review of Books, Gould has characterized the gene-centered perspective as confusing book-keeping with causality ... Gould views selection as working on many levels, and has called attention to a hierarchical perspective of selection ...
... Though not directly related to molecular evolution, the mid-1960s also saw the rise of the gene-centered view of evolution, spurred by George C ... individual genes (rather than whole organisms or populations) as the theoretical basis for evolution ... However, the increased focus on genes did not mean a focus on molecular evolution in fact, the adaptationism promoted by Williams and other evolutionary ...
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