List of unsolved problems in biology
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- Origin of Life: Exactly how and when did life on Earth originate? Which of the many hypotheses is correct?
- Arthropod head problem: A long-standing zoological dispute concerning the segmental composition of the heads of the various arthropod groups, and how they are evolutionarily related to each other.
- Biological aging: There are a number of hypotheses why senescence occurs including those that it is programmed by gene expression changes and that it is the accumulative damage of biological processes.
- Extraterrestrial life: Might life which does not originate from planet Earth also have developed on other planets?
- Paradox of the plankton: The high diversity of phytoplankton seems to violate the competitive exclusion principle.
- Cambrian explosion: What is the cause of the apparent rapid diversification of multicellular animal life around the beginning of the Cambrian, resulting in the emergence of almost all modern animal phyla?
- Golgi apparatus: In cell theory, what is the exact transport mechanism by which proteins travel through the Golgi apparatus?
- Evolution of sex: What selective advantages drove the development of sexual reproduction, and how did it develop?
- Butterfly migration: How do the descendants of Monarch butterfly all over Canada and the US eventually, after migrating for several generations, manage to return to a few relatively small overwintering spots?
- Thomas N. Sherratt, David M. Wilkinson. Big questions in ecology and evolution. Oxford University Press US, 2009. ISBN 978-0-19-954861-3