mutation biological and otherwise

Here’s another lesson from biology. Again it’s not a biology lesson but a cursory, semi-informed look at scientific research that, I for one find, inspiring or possessing (non-scientific) existential value for further meditations.

In this fascinating, real-life experiment it’s discovered that a life-enhancing mutation was made possible by a seemingly meaningless mutation thousands of generations earlier.

cobra mutant

Maybe I should present it in a fictional style — perhaps something along the lines of
Zelazny’s Bridge of Ashes. Not that I disagree with the critics who said it wasn’t Zelazny’s best and seemed to agree about its flaws.

Here’s the science story.
It’s one I find especially intriguing. Not so much for the implications it has for biologists (not being one myself), or because it may help settle a widely disputed detail in the theory of evolution. For me, it is fascinating as some kind of metaphor, or allegory, or trope — even though I’m not sure what it’s an analogy for. Nonetheless, it strikes me as something very cool and I suspect very important in realms far outside of the field of evolutionary biology.