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When It Comes To Evolution, Microbes Have To Pick And Choose

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Summary

The article discusses how microbes will evolve further in one path, rather than favoring multiple traits. Microbes in certain environments will develop a trait that favors thriving in that environment, while microbes in other environments will favor different traits that allow them to thrive in that environment. The article then ties in how this is relevant to further studies such as those involving antibiotic resistance.

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Analysis

  • A key point of this article is how microbes appear to take a path in evolution instead of choosing multiple traits. Instead of a microbe choosing increased growth rate and swimming speed, a microbe will choose one trait and further it to thrive.
  • The article is written by an author who has past experience writing articles regarding science, and has won awards regarding writing about science, which makes the article scientifically accurate and credible.
  • I found it interesting how microbes have to essentially choose a compromise and focus on one trait instead of multiple to thrive. This was striking because it showcases how not only that microbes will adapt to different environments and how antibiotic resistance is evolved against, but also shows that microbes cannot select for many traits for survival and must choose the most ideal trait instead.
  • In this article, I agree with the explanation on how these evolutionary mechanisms in microbes provide relevance to studies done for antibiotic resistance in relevance to infectious pathogens. Conclusion• A new insight that this article provides is how exactly microbes respond to high or low levels of resources. The knowledge provided was new to me in how microbes will respond to a high nutrient environment by selecting for the fast swimming trait, while microbes in a low nutrient environment will select for a fast reproduction trait. I was previously not aware of constraints on selection of multiple traits, so that was striking to me.
  • This article has personal relevance to me because I used to have chronic cases of strep throat as a child, both viral and bacterial. As someone who was prescribed antibiotics countless times, even when the strep throat tested as viral, I find antibiotic resistance a pressing issue and very relevant to my personal experiences.

Moreover, I connected this article to in-class lessons because we were taught in class about the evolutionary processes that led to the development of present-day microbes. Lecture taught about how conditions on early Earth led to the eventual appearance of microbes and also discussed how microbes reproduce rapidly, adapt quickly to environments, and exchange genetic information. For this reason, I find this article on microbial evolution to be relevant to my personal experiences and what I have learned.

15 July 2020

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