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13:15 - 13:55 24 January 2012
Lunch Hour Lecture: Is complex life a freak accident?
Darwin Lecture Theatre - accessed vial Malet Place |
Gower St | London | WC1E 6BT | United Kingdom
Admission: Free and open to anyone on a first-come first-served basis. Lectures are also streamed live online or can be downloaded after the event.
Dr Nick Lane, UCL Genetics, evolution and environment
Natural selection is a kind of search engine. Given enough time, and suitably vast populations, it should find the best solutions repeatedly. So why are bacteria still bacteria? And why did all complex life on our planet share an ancestor that only arose once in four billion years? I will suggest that everything we see around us stemmed from a freak accident two billion years ago. We are far from inevitable, and may be alone in a universe of bacteria.
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