macromutation

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Related to Macromutations: punctuated equilibrium, macroevolution

macromutation

[‚mak·rə·myü′tā·shən]
(genetics)
Any genetic change that leads to a pronounced phenotypic alteration.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Long jumps, forced macromutations might prove very effective on rugged landscapes, where many fitness peaks exist, though they become a weak strategy as the complexity (diversity and numbers) increases.
Otherwise, the recrudescence operator (macromutation) is invoked and the mutation and recombination probabilities are incremented.
Many mechanisms have been proposed to explain these shifts, most prominently Wright's (1977) shifting balance; others have included Fisher's (1958) idea that individual fitnesses change frequently and Goldschmidt's (1940) macromutations. Here I suggest a modification of Wright's idea that applies when adaptive landscapes are defined with respect to phenotypes - that changes in the phenotypic variance resulting from drift allow transition to occur.