XXVII.2 The factual accuracy of evolutionary theories is confirmed by extensive direct and indirect evidence

There are very few scientific theories that would be so well supported by empirical data as the theory of evolution.However, it is necessary to differentiate between the evidence for the fact of biological evolution and the evidence for the role of the particular mechanisms that were or are active during this evolution.The very fact of biological evolution, i.e. the spontaneous formation and gradual development of biological species from a common ancestor, has been confirmed by such a large amount of paleontological, biogeographical, physiological and molecular biological data that no sufficiently informed and at least minimally rational person can doubt it.On the other hand, the importance of the individual mechanisms that were active in evolution and that are basically its driving force will apparently still continue to be a subject of critical studies for quite some time to come.The most important evolutionary mechanisms are apparently already known, at least in their simplest forms, but the degree of their importance in evolution continues to be a subject for discussion.

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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.