From Genome Evolution to Animal Diversity: A Tale of Moths and Mammals

The Linnean Society of London, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London, W1J 0BF, United Kingdom
+44 (0)20 7434 4479 EXT 11

EVENING MEETING 18:00–19:00 Thursday 19 January 2017

170119 Peter Holland
Butterfly eggs © Peter Holland

How have genetic differences shaped the diversity of animal life on the planet? Evolutionary developmental biology tries to answer this question. Much attention has been given to ‘regulatory mutations’ that alter when and where genes are active. Perhaps all animals use the same genes, but in subtly different ways?

This view overlooks the fact that thousands of new genes evolved in each animal group. Lepidoptera and mammals reveal fascinating examples of novel genes, used to control new modes of development, contributing to evolutionary success. The links between molecular evolution and animal diversity are elusive, but gradually coming into focus.

Professor Peter Holland FLS FRS is Linacre Professor of Zoology at the University of Oxford and has undertaken research into animal evolution for over 30 years. His popular book The Animal Kingdom: A Very Short Introduction is available in several languages.

  • This event is free and open to all.
  • Registration is not necessary. Seats will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Doors will open at 17:30.
  • Tea will be served in the Library from 17:30 and the event will be followed by a wine reception.

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