L'ultimo fascicolo di Current Biology, Vol 17, R661-R672, 21 August 2007 contiene alcuni saggi dedicati alla cooperazione nel mondo animale.
Quale migliore introduzione al dossier si può fare se non riprendendo l'abstract del primo articolo?
Natural selection favours genes that increase an organism's ability to survive and reproduce. This would appear to lead to a world dominated by selfish behaviour. However, cooperation can be found at all levels of biological organisation: genes cooperate in genomes, organelles cooperate to form eukaryotic cells, cells cooperate to make multicellular organisms, bacterial parasites cooperate to overcome host defences, animals breed cooperatively, and humans and insects cooperate to build societies. Over the last 40 years, biologists have developed a theoretical framework that can explain cooperation at all these levels. Here, we summarise this theory, illustrate how it may be applied to real organisms and discuss future directions.
Ecco il sommario dei testi:
Evolutionary Explanations for Cooperation
Stuart A. West, Ashleigh S. Griffin, and Andy Gardner
Kin Selection versus Sexual Selection: Why the Ends Do Not Meet
Jacobus J. Boomsma
The Cold War of the Social Amoebae
Gad Shaulsky and Richard H. Kessin
Sylvia Cremer, Sophie A.O. Armitage, and Paul Schmid-Hempel
Social Learning in Insects — From Miniature Brains to Consensus Building
Ellouise Leadbeater and Lars Chittka
Sociality, Evolution and Cognition
Richard W. Byrne and Lucy A. Bates
Social Cognition in Humans
Chris D. Frith and Uta Frith