For this exercise you will read “On the Origin of Cooperation”, one of the “Year of Darwin” essays published in 2009 in the journal Science. This one discusses Darwin’s contribution to the subject, but also covers recent research on the genetic basis for cooperation, not only in humans but in a number of other organisms as well. You can access the review here. Read it and be prepared to answer these questions.

1.(2) Darwin originally considered cooperative behavior in organisms problematic for his theory. Why?

2.(2) How did Darwin explain the origin of cooperative behavior in organisms, including humans? 

3.(2) Cooperative behavior does not only involve groups of close relatives. In such cases, what else, besides relatedness, might be involved in the evolution of cooperative behavior? 

4.(2) What is “parochial altruism”?  What explanation has been given for the prevalence of this in humans?

5.(2) The csaA gene in Dictyostelium has been called a “greenbeard gene”. Google this to see what this term means and how it is supposed to work. How does it work specifically in Dictyostelium?