III.5 We can differentiate point, chromosome and genomic mutations according to their physical principle.

Mutationscan be differentiated according to a number of criteria.According to their physical nature, they can be classified as point mutations, mutations at the level of DNA sections (chromosomes) and at the level of the entire genome.Mutations can be encountered in the nuclear DNA and in the organelle DNA.“Mutations” that occurred during RNA transcription and that are thus not at all connected to the DNA exhibit the character of vanishing mutations, i.e. the mutations whose manifestation becomes weaker over time.In single-cell organisms with a short generation time and long mRNA lifetime, these mutations can peter out over many generations.On the other hand, mutation can occur in multicellular organisms only during ontogenesis or in the adult organism, so that the cells containing the given mutation can be present only in some tissues.If these somatic mutations do not reach the germinal organs and tissues, they are of no evolutionary importance.

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The classical Darwinian theory of evolution can explain the evolution of adaptive traits only in asexual organisms. The frozen plasticity theory is much more general: It can also explain the origin and evolution of adaptive traits in both asexual and sexual organisms Read more
Draft translation from: Evoluční biologie, 2. vydání (Evolutionary biology, 2nd edition), J. Flegr, Academia Prague 2009. The translation was not done by biologist, therefore any suggestion concerning proper scientific terminology and language usage are highly welcomed. You can send your comments to flegratcesnet [dot] cz. Thank you.