evolution@home at InSpace, University of Edinburgh
evolution@home and research programs that help to work out Darwin's ideas will be discussed at InSpace, University of Edinburgh.
Darwin's discovery of natural selection was pivotal in starting a variety of research programs that investigate how the forces ofevolution shape diversity and destiny of natural populations. This event will highlight five forces of evolution and their impact on populations:
- random genetic drift,
- recombination or its absence
- spatial structure or its absence.
Each of these forces is *relatively* easy to understand of its own, but in combination they consistently stretch our biological, mathematical and computational abilities beyond their limits. To deal with such complexity, researchers usually investigate only a subset of these forces in more limited settings, answering specific questions. At this event examples will be presented that illustrate some of the results that have been obtained that way. A better understanding of evolution is pivotal for addressing various problems of our time, including
- the evolution of antibiotic resistance
- the extinction of endangered species
- the potential long-term impact of man-made mutagenic substances.
Evolution@home is the first public distributed computing system for evolutionary biology and is being designed to address computational challenges in studying evolution. Evolution@home currently computes how asexual populations deal with harmful DNA changes.