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Evolution of robustness in digital organisms

Edlund, Jeffrey A. and Adami, Christoph (2004) Evolution of robustness in digital organisms. Artificial Life, 10 (2). pp. 167-179. ISSN 1064-5462. doi:10.1162/106454604773563595.

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We study the evolution of robustness in digital organisms adapting to a high mutation rate. As genomes adjust to the harsh mutational environment, the mean effect of single Imitations decreases, up until the point where a sizable fraction (up to 30% in many cases) of the Imitations are neutral. We correlate the changes in robustness along the line of descent to changes in directional epistasis, and find that increased robustness is achieved by moving from antagonistic epistasis between mutations towards codes where mutations are, on average, independent. We interpret this recoding as a breakup of linkage between vital sections of the genome, up to the point where instructions are maximally independent of each other. While such a recoding often requires sacrificing some replication speed, it is the best strategy for withstanding high rates of mutation.

Item Type:Article
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Adami, Christoph0000-0002-2915-9504
Additional Information:© 2004 Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Posted Online March 11, 2006. We thank Charles Ofria and Claus Wilke for suggestions and discussions that led to the final version of this project. J.A.E. thanks D. Allan Drummond and Daniel Wagenaar for guidance. This work was supported by the National Science Foundation’s Biocomplexity Program under Contract No. DEB-9981397. All data were obtained on a cluster of 160 processors at Michigan State University, supported by the NSF under the aforementioned contract.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
National Science FoundationDEB-9981397
Subject Keywords:deleterious mutations; epistasis; fitness; complexity; selection
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:EDLal04
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Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:13559
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:08 May 2009 17:04
Last Modified:08 Nov 2021 22:38

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