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 (prē′ăd-ăp-tā′shən, -əp-)
1. A characteristic of an ancestral species or population that serves an adaptive though different function in a descendant species or population.
2. The ability of a characteristic to assume a new biological function without evolutionary modification.


(Biology) biology the possession by a species or other group of characteristics that may favour survival in a changed environment, such as the limblike fins of crossopterygian fishes, which are preadaptation to terrestrial life


(ˌpri æd əpˈteɪ ʃən)

Biol. a structure or property that develops in an ancestral stock and becomes useful in a descendant in a changed environment.
pre`a•dapt′ (-əˈdæpt) v.i.
pre`a•dap′tive, adj.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Many of these disjunct species groups share common characteristics (Raven, 1963) that function as preadaptations favoring establishment.
Processes de socialisation et preadaptations comportementales chez les araignees.
Hominine preadaptations for language and cognition, in P.
Evolution of sexual mimicry in the Orchidinae: The role of preadaptations in the attraction of male bees as pollinators.
Processus de socialization et preadaptations comportementales chez les araignees.