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The Origins of Genome Architecture [Hardcover]

Michael Lynch
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Book Description

March 30, 2007 0878934847 978-0878934843 1
With official genomic blueprints now available for hundreds of species, and thousands more expected in the near future, the field of biology has been forever transformed. Such readily accessible data have encouraged the proliferation of adaptive arguments for the evolution of gene and genomic features, often with little or no attention being given to simpler and more powerful alternative explanations. By integrating the central observations from molecular biology and population genetics relevant to comparative genomics, Lynch shows why the details matter. Presented in a nontechnical fashion, at both the population-genetic and molecular-genetic levels, this book offers a unifying explanatory framework for how the peculiar architectural diversity of eukaryotic genomes and genes came to arise. Under Lynch s hypothesis, the genome-wide repatterning of eukaryotic gene structure, which resulted primarily from nonadaptive processes, provided an entirely novel resource from which natural selection could secondarily build new forms of organismal complexity.

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Editorial Reviews

Review

This book is a must-read for every genome researcher ... It is the best, most up-to-date and thorough summary of genome evolution published. ... Almost every page introduces interesting, unanswered problems, making it a gold mine for graduate students in search of a thesis topic. --Axel Meyer, Nature

This is a truly remarkable book, which will forever change your view of evolutionary biology. Anyone with even tangential interest in evolution needs to read the preface, epilogue, and especially the fourth chapter on population size. Lynch takes a detailed knowledge of molecular genetics and genomics, combined with a refined fluency in population genetics, to create sound sweeping descriptions and predictions about evolution. ... Read Lynch's book, have your students read it, and let's revise our views of evolution. --Root Gorelick, Plant Science Bulletin

... the book's first 12 chapters are a must-read for anyone interested in the evolution of genomes. This Origins represents a serious, valiant, and highly scholarly attempt at making sense of the new data provided by the genomic revolution. To that aim, Lynch deploys the full array of conceptual tools that make up the modern synthesis paradigm in evolutionary biology. --Massimo Pigliucci, Science

This is a truly remarkable book, which will forever change your view of evolutionary biology. Anyone with even tangential interest in evolution needs to read the preface, epilogue, and especially the fourth chapter on population size. Lynch takes a detailed knowledge of molecular genetics and genomics, combined with a refined fluency in population genetics, to create sound sweeping descriptions and predictions about evolution. ... Read Lynch's book, have your students read it, and let's revise our views of evolution. --Root Gorelick, Plant Science Bulletin

... the book's first 12 chapters are a must-read for anyone interested in the evolution of genomes. This Origins represents a serious, valiant, and highly scholarly attempt at making sense of the new data provided by the genomic revolution. To that aim, Lynch deploys the full array of conceptual tools that make up the modern synthesis paradigm in evolutionary biology. --Massimo Pigliucci, Science

This is a truly remarkable book, which will forever change your view of evolutionary biology. Anyone with even tangential interest in evolution needs to read the preface, epilogue, and especially the fourth chapter on population size. Lynch takes a detailed knowledge of molecular genetics and genomics, combined with a refined fluency in population genetics, to create sound sweeping descriptions and predictions about evolution. ... Read Lynch's book, have your students read it, and let's revise our views of evolution. --Root Gorelick, Plant Science Bulletin

... the book's first 12 chapters are a must-read for anyone interested in the evolution of genomes. This Origins represents a serious, valiant, and highly scholarly attempt at making sense of the new data provided by the genomic revolution. To that aim, Lynch deploys the full array of conceptual tools that make up the modern synthesis paradigm in evolutionary biology. --Massimo Pigliucci, Science

About the Author

MICHAEL LYNCH is a Distinguished Professor in the Department of Biology at Indiana University, Bloomington, USA. BRUCE WALSH is a Professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Arizona, USA.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 340 pages
  • Publisher: Sinauer Associates Inc; 1 edition (March 30, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0878934847
  • ISBN-13: 978-0878934843
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 7.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #655,520 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Non-conventional ... but compelling November 8, 2009
Format:Hardcover
Lynch makes the case that the transition from prokaryote to eukaryote - and the evolution of multicellularity and greater complexity afterward - are best explained by non-adaptive processes. Genetic drift, rather than natural selection, may have cause the necessary genome expansions that we see in the higher lineages, along with increasing amounts of ambiguous, non-coding DNA with no known purpose.

Lynch's case is an extremely strong, refreshing and compelling one. His writing is clear and simple, considering the subject matter. However, this is not quite a beginner's book. Lynch's case is fairly one-sided; he does not give an enormous amount of consideration to alternative possibilities, whether such alternatives necessarily invoke natural selection or not. Reduced population size is certainly symptomatic of increased organismal complexity and size. It does not automatically follow that it is caused by this reduction. Further, we should be careful about invoking traditional population genetics theory in light of more recent genomics work, which challenges many of the traditional core assumptions. Note, this is a caveat, and not a criticism (hence, the 5-star rating); Lynch is simply making his case. Nonetheless, this approach could lead a new reader to assume that the case is closed - that Lynch's explanation is comprehensive and there is no more work to be done.

In reality, this book, along with many of Lynch's recent publications in prestigious journals, open whole avenues of investigation which need urgent attention. Lynch and his contemporaries appear to be well-equipped to undertake this work.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Good intent May 25, 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Dr. Lynch is right about a great many things, and gives a lengthy review about many relevant topics regarding evolution and population genetics. The only charge against this book is the author's language: while discussing a rigorous subject, lengthy, deeply complex sentence structures make the subject a challenge to understand. The book is worth reading, but it will not be easy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wooow This is not a beginners book April 5, 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is not a course book in the field but not a beginners book either however quite much scientific references are accompanying ideas. I recommend for everyone interested in genetics.
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