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Theories of Evolution

Charles Darwin and Lamarck’s Theories of Evolution

Darwin’s Theory of Evolution is the extensively held concept that all life is interrelated and has descended from a common ancestor: the birds and the bananas, the fishes and the flowers are all related.
Darwin’s general theory presumes the development of life from non-life and stresses an entirely naturalistic (undirected) “descent with modification”. That is, composite creatures develop from more simple ancestors unsurprisingly over time.
In summary, as random genetic mutations take place in an organism’s genetic code, the valuable mutations are conserved due to the fact that they help the organism to survive.
This process is referred to as natural selection. These advantageous mutations are transferred to the next generation. Over time, helpful mutations mount up and the result is a completely different organism (not just a variation of the original organism but completely different creature).
Charles Darwin is renowned for his theory of evolution, but he was not the only person to develop a theory of evolution. Charles Darwin was an English naturalist. He studied variation in plants and animals during a five-year cruise around the world in the 19th century.
He gives explanations about evolution in a book known as on the Origin of Species, which was publicized in 1859.
Darwin’s theory raised controversy amongst his contemporaries and his ideas were only slowly accepted, Even though a few people still do not believe in them today. The reasons why people fail to believe in his theories are:
•Darwin’s theory was the contrary of religious belief that God had made all the animals and plants on Earth
•Darwin did not have an adequate amount of evidence at the time to convince a lot of scientists
•It took 50 years after Darwin’s theory was made public to discover the way inheritance and variation worked.

Darwin’s Theory of Evolution – The theory of Natural Selection

Whereas Darwin’s Theory of Evolution is a relatively young prototype, the evolutionary worldview itself is as old as ancient times.
Ancient Greek philosophers like Anaximander hypothesized the development of life from non-life and the evolutionary descent of man from animal.
Charles Darwin basically brought something fresh to the old philosophy – a credible mechanism known as “natural selection.” Natural selection acts to safeguard and build up minor advantageous genetic mutations.
Assuming that a member of a species evolved a functional advantage, (it grew wings and learned to fly).
Its offspring would inherit that benefit and transfer it to their offspring. The inferior (deprived) members of the same species would slowly but surely die out, leaving only the superior (privileged) members of the species.
Natural selection is the conservation of a functional advantage that allows species to compete better in the undomesticated.
Natural selection is the natural equivalent to household breeding. Over the centuries, human breeders have created spectacular changes in domestic animal populations by choosing individuals to breed.
Breeders do away with unwanted traits steadily over time. Likewise, natural selection does away with inferior species progressively over time.

Darwin’s Theory of Evolution – Slowly But Surely

Darwin’s Theory of Evolution is a slow but gradual process. Darwin wrote, “…Natural selection acts only by taking advantage of slight successive variations; she can never take a great and sudden leap, but must advance by short and sure, though slow steps.”
Therefore, Darwin accepted that, “If it could be established that any multifaceted organ existed, which could not probably have been fashioned by numerous, consecutive, slight modifications, my theory would completely break down.
Such a composite organ would be referred to as an “irreducibly multifaceted system”.
An irreducibly composite system is one consisted of numerous parts, all of which are essential for the system to function.
If even one part is missing, the whole system will stop working or functioning. Every individual part is fundamental.
Therefore, such a system could not have evolved gradually, part by part. The familiar mousetrap is a day to day non-biological instance of irreducible complication.
It is made up of five fundamental parts: a catch (to hold the bait), a commanding spring, a thin rod known as “the hammer,” a griping bar to lock the hammer in place, and a stage to mount the trap.
If any one of these parts is not there, the machinery will not work. Every individual part is integral. The mousetrap is irreducibly composite.

Darwin’s Theory of Evolution – A Theory In Crisis

Darwin’s Theory of Evolution is a theory in crisis in view of light of the tremendous advances we’ve made in molecular biology, biochemistry and genetics over the past fifty years.
We presently know that there are in fact tens of thousands of irreducibly composite systems on the cellular level.
Specific complication pervades the microscopic biological world.
Molecular biologist Michael Denton wrote, “even though the tiniest bacterial cells are extremely small, weighing less than 10-12 grams, each is in effect a genuine micro-miniaturized factory encompassing thousands of elegantly designed pieces of complicated molecular mechanism, made up in total of one hundred thousand million atoms, far more complex than any machine built by man and entirely without equivalent in the non-living world.
And we don’t require a microscope to examine irreducible complication.
The eye, the ear and the heart are all examples of irreducible complexity, though they were not acknowledged as such in Darwin’s day.
Nonetheless, Darwin admitted, “To assume that the eye with all its matchless contrivances for adjusting the focus to diverse distances, for admitting dissimilar amounts of light, and for the alteration of spherical and chromatic aberration, could have been produced by natural selection, appears quite illogical in the utmost degree

Lamarck’s theory of evolution:

Jean-Baptiste Lamarck on the other hand was a French scientist who evolved an alternative theory of evolution at the start of the 19th century. His theory included two ideas:
1.A trait which is made use of more frequently by an organism grows bigger and stronger, and one that is not being utilized gradually and at the end becomes extinct.
2.Any feature of an organism that is enhanced through use is transferred to the s offspring of the organism.
Nevertheless, we now know that in majority of cases this type of inheritance cannot occur.
Lamarck’s theory cannot take care of every observation made consigning life on Earth.
For example, his theory implies that every organism would slowly and surely turns composite and simple organisms become extinct.On the contrary, Darwin’s theory can account for the continued presence of simple organisms.
Darwin was not the first naturalist to suggest that species altered over time into fresh species—that life, as we would say currently, evolves.
In the eighteenth century, Buffon and other naturalists started to initiate the idea that life may not have been constant or permanent since creation.
By the end of the 1700s, paleontologists had puffed up the fossil collections of Europe, offering a picture of the ancient times at odds with an unchanging natural world.
And in 1801, a French naturalist named Jean Baptiste Pierre Antoine de Monet, Chevalier de Lamarck took a great theoretical step and proposed a full-blown theory of evolution.
Lamarck started his scientific career as a botanist, but in 1793 he became one of the founding professors of the Musee National d’Histoire Naturelle as an expert on invertebrates.
His work on classification of worms, spiders, molluscs, and other boneless creatures was far above the findings of his time.

Change through use and disuse

Lamarck was hit by the similarities of a lot of the animals he examined and was highly impressed by the escalating fossil record.
It led him to dispute that life was not rigid or stable. When environments are altered, organisms had to alter their behavior to remain alive.
If they start to make use of an organ more than they did in the past, it would gradually increase in size during its lifetime.
If a giraffe stretched its neck for leaves, for instance, a “nervous fluid” would flow into its neck and cause it to grow longer.
Its offspring would inherit the longer neck, and extra and improved stretching would make it longer still over a lot of generations.
In the meantime organs that organisms stopped making use of would shrink.

Organisms moved to higher complexity

This type of evolution, for which Lamarck is majorly well known today, was only one of two mechanisms he projected. As organisms adapted to their surroundings, nature as well drove them inescapably upward from simple forms to progressively more composite ones.
Like Buffon, Lamarck is of the thought that life had started via spontaneous generation. But he maintained that fresh prehistoric living things sprang up throughout the history of life; today’s microbes were merely “the fresh kids on the block.”
Lamarck as well postulated that organisms were driven from simple to increasingly more complex forms.
The characteristic example used to illustrate the concept of use and disuse is the extended neck of the giraffe. According to Lamarck’s theory, a given giraffe could, over a lifetime of twisting to reach high branches, grow an elongated neck.
A key fault of his theory was that he could not illustrate the way this could occur even though he discussed a “natural tendency toward perfection.”
Another example Lamarck made use of was the toes of water birds.
He postulated that from years of straining their toes to swim through water, these birds grew elongated, webbed toes to enhance their swimming.
These two examples illustrate the way use could change a characteristic or a feature.
In the same way, Lamarck believed that disuse would result in a character or feature becoming reduced.
The wings of penguins, for instance, would be smaller than those of other birds for the fact that penguins do not use them to fly.
The second part of Lamarck’s mechanism for evolution is the inheritance of acquired traits.
He believed that traits altered or acquired over an individual’s lifetime could be transferred down to its offspring.
Giraffes that had acquired long necks would have offspring with long necks instead of the short necks their parents were born with.
This type of inheritance, every now and then known as Lamarckian inheritance, has since been disproved through the discovery of hereditary genetics.
An extension of Lamarck’s ideas of inheritance that has stood the test of time, though, is the idea that evolutionary change occurs slowly and steadily.
He studied antique seashells and observed that the older they were, the simpler they looked. From that, he concluded that species began simple and constantly moved toward complexity, or, as he phrased it, closer to perfection.

Difference between the two theories of evolution:

Darwin depended on nearly an equivalent evidence for evolution that Lamarck did (like in the vestigial structures and selection through breeding), but made entirely different arguments from Lamarck.
Darwin did not accept a dart of complication driving through the history of life.
He argued that complexity resulted merely as a result of life adapting to its local environment from generation to generation similar to modern biologists.
Although Darwin’s ideas weren’t completely modern.
For instance, he started and eventually refused to accept various varying ideas regarding heredity (which includes the inheritance of acquired characteristics, as envisioned by Lamarck) and never came to any rewarding conclusion about the way traits were transferred from parent to offspring.
In spite of what Lamarck got wrong in his postulations he can be credited with visualizing evolutionary change for the first time.

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