Cell Reports special Darwin Day issue

Cell Reports, an open access journal of cell biology, has a special Darwin Day issue:

In celebration of Darwin Day 2013, we offer this collection of papers published in Cell Reports on various aspects of evolutionary biology. Topics range from experimental evolution in real time to explorations of the origins of signaling pathways in existence for nearly a billion years. Like all papers in Cell Reports, these articles are open access, free to read and distribute. We hope you enjoy the collection, which is perhaps best prefaced by Mr. Darwin himself:

It is interesting to contemplate an entangled bank, clothed with many plants of many kinds, with birds singing on the bushes, with various insects flitting about, and with worms crawling through the damp earth, and to reflect that these elaborately constructed forms, so different from each other, and dependent on each other in so complex a manner, have all been produced by laws acting around us. These laws, taken in the largest sense, being Growth with Reproduction; Inheritance which is almost implied by reproduction; Variability from the indirect and direct action of the external conditions of life, and from use and disuse; a Ratio of Increase so high as to lead to a Struggle for Life, and as a consequence to Natural Selection, entailing Divergence of Character and the Extinction of less-improved forms. Thus, from the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, directly follows. There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.

  • On the Origin of Species, first edition, closing paragraph