Blackwell Publishing

Multi-locus population genetics - Why does recombination exist?


Why does recombination exist?

One of the major problems of evolutionary biology is why recombination exists. This question needs to be answered with reference to both linkage equilibrium and disequilibrium.

When linkage equilibrium exists, haplotype frequencies are repeated from generation to generation whether or not there is recombination: if there is no recombination, the haplotype frequencies are necessarily constant.

If there is recombination, it creates and destroys each haplotype at the same rate: that is what is meant by linkage equilibrium.

The biologist David Haig discusses the problem of why recombination takes place.

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