Is it really a Failure?

Patrick Foley patfoley at
Wed Nov 19 14:57:14 EST 2003


Gene flow between closely related species (usually within a genus) is 
rather common in flowering plants and in some animals.

Edgar Anderson documented this in Iris and then in several other plants 
(see his book on Introgressive Hybridization) one half century ago). 
Plant systematics papers and books in the 1960's often showed the 
results of artificially made crosses between species, and as Charles 
Darwin had suggeste back in 1859, speciation is clearly not a black or 
white thing in many genera.

Hybrid oaks, mustards, rhododendrons, evening primroses, etc., et multa 
cetera show that such hybridizations are common.

More recently work in vertebrates by John Avise at Georgia has shown 
that introgressive hybridization is common especially for mitochondrial 
DNA which flits between species readily. See his 2000 book 
Phylogeography for references.

patfoley at

Jorge Bizarro wrote:

> People
> Could someone give me a hint on the following:
> How common is gene flow between diferent plant species or between wild and
> cultivated varieties of a given plant???
> Could really GM crops pass on insecticide genes to wild equivalents or
> xeno-species??
> This is the most pertinent point to be investigated with GM crops... the
> rest is *trivia*...
> Jorge
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