Saturday, July 12, 2008

It's Just A THEORY, Stupid 2

By Angry Doc

Reader zhanzhao made the comment in the previous post that evolution "cannot be observed under lab conditions, vaildated [sic] nor replicated".

He is partly correct.

Evolution has been observed and validated in a lab condition, but curiously, it could not be replicated*.

Leng Hiong covered this interesting experiment briefly earlier. If you want a more detailed account but do not want to read the original paper, Bad Science has a post on an exchange between the investigator and a critic which covers some of the details of the experiment.

Both are well-worth a read.

* - Edit: On closer reading of the posts I realise that the citrate+ trait does "re-evolve" in the 'ancestors' of the populations of E. coli that evolved the trait, but not in the other 11 populations in the study, so in a sense evolution has been observed to be replicated. I apologise for the error.

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