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Flashcards in Lecture 5 Deck (16):

Cultural Evolutionist

-pushing for the idea of social learning above evolutionary adaptive traits
-diverse environments would've made social learning more effective because its quicker


Critique of evolutionary adapting taste for high fats and sugar

it is reductive to say that we have that desire 'to keep you alive in ancient societies'

-how much of an explanation of modern obesity is it?
(we don't know that)


Gene-Culture Co-Evolution

we are imitators, adapting in part of our cultural environment.

(e.g., sure there is a mismatch between food and lifestyle, but this is due to cultural evolution more than a genetic one)


Human Behavioural ecology

focuses on explaining how things are adaptive/non-adaptive in the present.

(e.g., comparing how much many individuals have and how healthy their diets are.)



advances in the field of genetics that let us read DNA- proteins wrapped around Histones, the structure of the DNA, etc.


RNA transcripts role

it reads genetics code (the letters) which then get expressed as different expressions dependent on the letter combination.

(e.g., CGA gets read as arginine- genetic code)
-this process is the only sense in which there is a genetic code- in the mapping from particular codons in the RNA to their corresponding amino acids


Central dogma of genetics

-one way flow of information, replication off DNA, transcription in RNA, and translation in proteins


What are some way variation occurs at the genetic level?

-Breeding: any two people can create over 8 million unique genotypes

-mutations: can lead to the creation of phenotypes not in parents, usually harmful

-Recombination events: when paired chromosomes can exchange DNA during meiosis is another way variation occurs


Heritability estimates

tell us about characteristics of populations under study, not the characteristic itself.

'proportion of variation in a phenotypic characteristic associated with genetic variation'


Inheritance (Dupre)

the tendency of offspring to be more similar to their parents than to other members of the population.


Typical definition of 'heritable'

of a characteristic, affected by variation in genes and therefore transmissible genetically from parent to offspring


Methods of studying heritability

-Twin studies: using MZ or DZ twins
-Adoption studies: are adopted children more like biological parents or adopted parents


Developmental bias

Organisms constructed in development and developmental processes non-randomly direct selection



generates traits well suited to the environment which directs further selection


Niche Construction

Organisms often co-construct and coevolve with their environments and in so doing change the environment within which they evolve


Extra-genetic inheritance

epigenetic, or socially transmitted behaviour