One origin? (viral evolution)

Robin Leech releech at TELUSPLANET.NET
Fri Jul 20 12:32:03 CDT 2001

Many "whole" organisms, such as insects, reproduce asexually.  So, no, it is
not all based on sexual reproduction.
Robin Leech
----- Original Message -----
From: "Thomas Lammers" <lammers at VAXA.CIS.UWOSH.EDU>
Sent: Friday, July 20, 2001 12:20 PM
Subject: Re: One origin? (viral evolution)

> At 09:54 AM 7/20/01 -0700, Curtis Clark wrote:
> >Snakes are tetrapods, even though they have no legs, because they are
> >members of the tetrapod clade, descended from the first tetrapods.
> >Likewise, eukaryotes are a clade, and eubacteria may be a clade (although
> >I know that Ken disagrees), but "prokaryotes" are a grade.
> >
> >If a mammalian virus is a piece of mammalian DNA gone astray, it is a
> >eukaryote, and in fact it is a mammal. Viruses being what they are, they
> >have little trace of their ancestry, but I would venture that the
> >differences in gene regulation and genome structure between eubacteria
> >eukaryotes might be reflected in viral genomes, and that we could thus
> >understand their relationships.
> >
> >"Defining" prokaryotes and eukaryotes by their nuclei is essentialist.
> >Let's instead ask what we can infer about lineage groups.
> All well and good.  But I think that cladistic phylogeny carries with it
> unstated assumption that the evolutionary events it reflects are the
> of sexual reproduction of whole organisms, n'est ce pas?   I do
> not  believe the methodology functions well when we are dealing with bits
> of the organism that have taken on a life of their own.
> Thomas G. Lammers, Ph.D.
> Assistant Professor and Curator of the Herbarium (OSH)
> Department of Biology and Microbiology
> University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
> Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54901-8640 USA
> e-mail:       lammers at
> phone:      920-424-1002
> fax:           920-424-1101
> Plant systematics; classification, nomenclature, evolution, and
> biogeography of the Campanulaceae s. lat.
> Webpages:
> -----------------------------------------------------------
> "Today's mighty oak is yesterday's nut that stood his ground."
>                                                  -- Anonymous

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