Latest Protein Spotlight: You want it darker

We are highly adaptable. We have been for the past few million years, and continue to be so on a daily basis. Whichever way you look at it, the art of adaptation really is just a way of preserving your integrity - physical or psychological - and coping the best way possible with the environment you are evolving in.

Throughout the animal world and over the aeons, the capacity to adapt has always been Nature's answer to predators and hostile physical, geographical or climatic conditions. In short, adaptation is the best way to survive and Charles Darwin was the first to explain animal diversity in this way in his Origin of Species. Ever since, the study of fossils or more recently genomes is a constant support to Darwin's theory of what was then coined 'natural selection'. But it all remained very theoretical; it is difficult to observe animal adaptation within a man's lifetime when it occurs over thousands or even hundreds of years. However, there is a moth in Great Britain, known as the Peppered Moth which, over a relatively short period of time, adapted to the effects of pollution resulting from the Industrial Revolution by changing the colour of its body and wings. The protein involved in this change was recently discovered and named 'the cortex protein'. More

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