The major evolutionary transitions

Eörs Szathmáry, John Maynard Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

420 Citations (Scopus)


There is no theoretical reason to expect evolutionary lineages to increase in complexity with time, and no empirical evidence that they do so. Nevertheless, eukaryotic cells are more complex than prokaryotic ones, animals and plants are more complex than protists, and so on. This increase in complexity may have been achieved as a result of a series of major evolutionary transitions. These involved changes in the way information is stored and transmitted.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)227-232
Number of pages6
Issue number6519
Publication statusPublished - Mar 16 1995

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