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Trends Ecol Evol. 2000 May;15(5):207-211.

Transgenic organisms in evolutionary ecology.


Evolutionary ecology aims to understand how phenotypes are designed for reproductive success and survival. Perhaps the most powerful approach towards this goal is to alter a character genetically and observe the resulting change in reproduction, survival, growth, defense or competitive ability. Until recently, this strategy was not practical. Transgenic manipulation now offers a solution - novel genes are introduced into the germ line and are then expressed in the developing organism. This technique is already available in model and agricultural organisms. The challenge for molecular evolutionary ecologists is to find ways to adopt these powerful systems to understand the mechanisms underlying adaptive traits and their evolution.

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