Modern Theory of Evolution

The neo‐Darwin view of evolution incorporates modern understanding of population genetics, developmental biology, and paleontology, to which is being added knowledge of the molecular sequencing of DNA and the insights it provides concerning the phylogeny of life. The major premises of the genetic (synthetic) theory of evolution are: evolution is the change of gene (allele) frequencies in the gene pool of a population over many generations; species (and their gene pools) are isolated from one another, and the gene pool of each species is held together by gene flow; an individual has only a portion of the pool, which came from two different parents, and the portions are different in each individual; the alleles the individual receives are subject to chromosomal or gene mutations and recombinations; natural selection will favor some individuals, who will then contribute a larger portion of their gene combinations to the gene pool of the next generation; changes of allele frequencies come about primarily by natural selection, but migration, gene flow, and chromosomal variations are contributing factors; isolation and restriction of gene flow between subpopulations and their parent populations are necessary for the genetic and phenotypic divergence of the subpopulations.