poly: Suppressing Variation via Bundling Phenotypes

From: Robin Hanson <hanson@econ.berkeley.edu>
Date: Thu Feb 26 1998 - 11:03:35 PST

The Feb 20 '98 Science (279:1210-1213) has a nice article
by Waxman & Peck explaining how having a single genotype
dimension code for three or more phenotype dimensions can
robustly suppress most variation away from the single best

The fraction of non-optimal genotypes is given two counter
acting processes: worst genotypes get selected against,
and all genotypes produce mutated variations.

The core insight is that such bundling vastly
reduces the size of the "phase space" near the optimum,
and so vastly reduces the probability that a mutation
of a non-optimum genotype will be anywhere near the
optimum. This is a huge strike against such genotypes.
In contrast, when genotype and phenotype
dimensions are one-to-one, non-optimal genotypes frequenty
mutate to be close to optimum.

Robin Hanson
hanson@econ.berkeley.edu http://hanson.berkeley.edu/
RWJF Health Policy Scholar, Sch. of Public Health 510-643-1884
140 Warren Hall, UC Berkeley, CA 94720-7360 FAX: 510-643-8614
Received on Thu Feb 26 19:08:11 1998

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Tue Mar 07 2006 - 14:45:30 PST