Darwin-L Message Log 8:91 (April 1994)

Academic Discussion on the History and Theory of the Historical Sciences

This is one message from the Archives of Darwin-L (1993–1997), a professional discussion group on the history and theory of the historical sciences.

Note: Additional publications on evolution and the historical sciences by the Darwin-L list owner are available on SSRN.

<8:91>From WTUCKER@BOOTES.UNM.EDU  Tue Apr 26 15:06:23 1994

Date: Tue, 26 Apr 1994 14:00 MST
Subject: Re: Vitamin C
To: darwin-l@ukanaix.cc.ukans.edu

I'm afraid sturkel missed the line of reasoning behind the loss
of Vitamin C synthesis ability in many frugivores.  A metabolic cost
for Vitamin C synthesis is assumed.  An individual carrying a mutation
that causes it to produce less or no Vitamin C in an environment
where sufficient quantities of Vitamin C can be consumed would be at
a selective advantage.  Such an individual would have more energy to
spend on other fitness enhancing activites compared to conspecifics
wasting energy on the production of surplus Vitamin C.  This is only
a hypothesis, but it seems to fit the cross-species pattern.

W. Troy Tucker
Department of Anthropology
University of New Mexico
Albuquerque, NM 87131
e-mail wtucker@bootes.unm.edu  (Internet)

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