Genetics. From Genes to Genomes, Edition: 4th ed. by Hartwell L. et al.

By Hartwell L. et al.

Учебник по генетике.

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In other instances, the correlations between genes and traits are bewilderingly complex. An example is the genetic basis of facial features, in which many genes determine a large number of molecules that interact to generate the combination we recognize as a friend’s face. Gregor Mendel (1822–1884; Fig. 2), a stocky, bespectacled Augustinian monk and expert plant breeder, discovered the basic principles of genetics in the mid–nineteenth century. He published his findings in 1866, just seven years after Darwin’s On the Origin of Species appeared in print.

With the emergence of each successively larger informational unit, evolution gains the ability to duplicate increasingly complex informational modules through single genetic events. Probably even more important for the evolution of complexity is the rapid change of regulatory networks that specify how genes behave (that is, when, where, and to what degree they are expressed) during development. For example, the two-winged fly evolved from a four-winged ancestor not because of changes in gene-encoded structural proteins, but rather because of a rewiring of the regulatory network, which converted one pair of wings into two balancing organs known as haltere (Fig.

5 shows where Mendel worked and the microscope he used. Mendel devised a new experimental approach Before Mendel, many misconceptions clouded people’s thinking about heredity. Two of the prevailing errors were particularly misleading. The first was that one parent contributes most to an offspring’s inherited features; Nicolaas Hartsoeker, one of the earliest microscopists, contended in 1694 that it was the male, by way of a fully formed “homunculus” inside the sperm (Fig. 6). Another deceptive notion was the concept of blended inheritance, the idea that parental traits become mixed and forever changed in the offspring, as when blue and yellow pigment merge to green on a painter’s palette.

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