Navigation Links
Is blood thicker than water?
Date:3/25/2011

In 1964 biologist William Hamilton introduced Inclusive Fitness Theory to predict and explain phenomena ranging from animal behavior to patterns of gene expression. With its many successes, the theory became a cornerstone for modern biology. In August, 2010, Harvard researchers challenged the theory in the prestigious journal, Nature. Now Nature has published sharp rebuttals from scores of scientists, including Edward Allen Herre and William Wcislo, staff scientists at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute.

"Bees are probably the most useful group for studying why eusocial organisms have workers that do not reproduce, but the authors got a lot of their basic facts about bees wrong. For example, the authors argue that having defensible nests is the most important consideration for eusociality, but they ignore the fact that there are thousands of nest making animals that are not eusocial," said Wcislo, a specialist in the biology of bees. "What really caught my attention was that they completely misrepresented results of one of my own studies. This is very poor scholarship that does not support their case at all."

Says co-author, Edward Allen Herre, "Challenging existing paradigms is an essential part of a healthy scientific process. However, the burden is on the challengers to present a better alternative, particularly when a paradigm has been as successful as Inclusive Fitness has been. Both the factual and theoretical basis of the case for their proposed alternatives falls apart with even mild scrutiny. They simply do not make their case. But their challenge is still useful because crucial parts of the theory come out stronger for having been tested, and researchers can better see where more studies are needed."

The Smithsonian has recently established formal collaborations with Arizona State University to study social insects and the phenomenon of eusociality. Researchers expect that this collaboration will produce studies with a direct bearing on the issues raised in this debate.


'/>"/>

Contact: Beth King
kingb@si.edu
703-487-3770, x8216
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Scientist plans to test for blood pressure genes affected by age
2. Discovery of natural compounds that could slow blood vessel growth
3. New blood test for Down syndrome
4. On the trail of a targeted therapy for blood cancers
5. Lower your blood pressure, hydrate your skin and reduce dental plaque -- with chocolate?
6. Building the blood-brain barrier
7. Apelin hormone injections powerfully lower blood sugar
8. Battling bacteria in the blood: Researchers tackle deadly infections
9. Femtomolar optical tweezers may enable sensitive blood tests
10. Drops in blood oxygen levels may be key to sudden death in some epilepsy patients
11. Scripps research scientists identify blood component that turns bacteria virulent
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Is blood thicker than water?
(Date:4/11/2017)... Florida , April 11, 2017 ... a security technology company, announces the appointment of independent Directors ... Bendheim to its Board of Directors, furthering the company,s ... ... of NXT-ID, we look forward to their guidance and benefiting ...
(Date:4/4/2017)... --  EyeLock LLC , a leader of iris-based identity ... and Trademark Office (USPTO) has issued U.S. Patent No. ... iris image with a face image acquired in sequence ... th issued patent. "The issuance ... multi-modal biometric capabilities that have recently come to market ...
(Date:3/29/2017)...  higi, the health IT company that operates the ... , today announced a Series B investment from ... The new investment and acquisition accelerates higi,s strategy to ... population health activities through the collection and workflow integration ... collects and secures data today on behalf of over ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... 12, 2017 , ... They call it the “hairy ball.” ... depiction of a system of linkages and connections so complex and dense that ... computer science at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) and director of the university’s bioinformatics ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... ... AMRI, a global contract research, development and manufacturing organization ... quality of life, will now be offering its impurity solutions as a stand-alone ... for all new drug products, including the finalization of ICH M7 earlier this ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... October 11, 2017 , ... ComplianceOnline’s Medical ... place on 7th and 8th June 2018 in San Francisco, CA. The Summit brings ... well as several distinguished CEOs, board directors and government officials from around the world ...
(Date:10/11/2017)... ... October 11, 2017 , ... A new study published in ... and fresh in vitro fertilization (IVF) transfer cycles. The multi-center matched ... , After comparing the results from the fresh and frozen transfer cohorts, the ...
Breaking Biology Technology: