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2005 Nature Publishing Group R E V I E W S
 

Summary: © 2005 Nature Publishing Group
R E V I E W S
NATURE REVIEWS | GENETICS VOLUME 6 | MAY 2005 | 361
Understanding phylogenetic relationships between
organisms is a prerequisite of almost any evolutionary
study,as contemporary species all share a common his-
tory through their ancestry. The idea of phylogeny fol-
lows directly from the theory of evolution presented by
Charles Darwin in The Origin of Species1
: the only illus-
tration in his famous book is the first representation of
evolutionary relationships among species, in the form
of a phylogenetic tree. The subsequent enthusiasm of
biologists for the phylogenetic concept is illustrated by
the publication of Ernst Haeckel's famous`trees'as early
as 1866 (REF.2).
Today,phylogenetics -- the reconstruction of evolu-
tionary history -- relies on using mathematical meth-
ods to infer the past from features of contemporary
species,with only the fossil record to provide a window

  

Source: Anisimova, Maria - Institute of Scientific Computing, Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich (ETHZ)

 

Collections: Biology and Medicine