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Population genetics is a subfield of genetics that deals with genetic differences within and between populations, and is a part of evolutionary biology. Studies in this branch of biology examine such phenomena as adaptation, speciation, and population structure.
Population genetics is a field of biology that studies the genetic composition of biological populations, and the changes in genetic composition that result from the operation of various factors, including natural selection. Population geneticists pursue their goals by developing abstract mathematical models of gene frequency dynamics, trying to extract conclusions from those models about the likely patterns of genetic variation in actual populations, and testing the conclusions against empirical data. A number of the more robust generalizations to emerge from population-genetic analysis are discussed below.
Population genetics is intimately bound up with the study of evolution and natural selection, and is often regarded as the theoretical cornerstone of modern Darwinism. This is because natural selection is one of the most important factors that can affect a population's genetic composition. Natural selection occurs when some variants in a population out-reproduce other variants as a result of being better adapted to the environment, or ‘fitter’. Presuming the fitness differences are at least partly due to genetic differences, this will cause the population's genetic makeup to be altered over time. By studying formal models of gene frequency change, population geneticists therefore hope to shed light on the evolutionary process, and to permit the consequences of different evolutionary hypotheses to be explored in a quantitatively precise way.
Scientific Tracks Abstracts: Journal of Cell Science & Therapy
Scientific Tracks Abstracts: Journal of Genetic Syndromes & Gene Therapy