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      Phenotypic diversity, population growth, and information in fluctuating environments.

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          Abstract

          Organisms in fluctuating environments must constantly adapt their behavior to survive. In clonal populations, this may be achieved through sensing followed by response or through the generation of diversity by stochastic phenotype switching. Here we show that stochastic switching can be favored over sensing when the environment changes infrequently. The optimal switching rates then mimic the statistics of environmental changes. We derive a relation between the long-term growth rate of the organism and the information available about its fluctuating environment.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Science
          Science (New York, N.Y.)
          American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)
          1095-9203
          0036-8075
          Sep 23 2005
          : 309
          : 5743
          Affiliations
          [1 ] Laboratory of Living Matter and Center for Studies in Physics and Biology, Rockefeller University, 1230 York Avenue, Box 34, New York, NY 10021-6399, USA. kussele@rockefeller.edu
          Article
          1114383
          10.1126/science.1114383
          16123265
          f2396f20-33f6-40e7-a60e-5152263671d9
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