Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Cost Of Selection

Number of genetic deaths (i.e. nonreplication of the predominant allele by homozygotes or heterozygotes for the allele) required to change an allele frequency from 0.0 to near 1.0. It is estimated that this requires deaths that equal about 30 times the size of the population, assuming that population size is stable. This can happen quickly if only a very few loci are involved, or more slowly for a larger number of loci. Aka cumulative substitutional load.

Cf. Muller’s ratchet.

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