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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 ?
Were tropical lineages handicapped in the process of colonization of the paramo environment with the year-round risk of subzero temperatures and physiological dryness against the presumably preadapted temperate lineages arriving flora the highly seasonal climate?
This will help scientists determine where to collect preadapted natural enemies of the insect for a biological control program.
While the path towards these portals might have been long and torturous in each case the physical structure of the environment prepared and preadapted organisms for this transition.
15234 31246 PRIONOPINE (w2) 15234 31264 NOTODONTID (w2) 15234 31624 PREADAPTED 15234 36124 TITTY-TOTTY * 15234 63124 PNEOSCOPES (st)
The population may be genetically preadapted to cope with the rapid climate change that we're seeing," he says.
The prolonged snout and jaw structure of the scythe butterflyfish appears to be preadapted for cleaning (Ferry-Graham et al.
The recent introduction of West Nile virus to North America and its permanent establishment there, however, is a sobering demonstration that newly introduced arboviruses sometimes achieve long-term survival in new areas where preadapted vectors and suitable vertebrate amplifying hosts are available (13).
The canal system provided habitat and dispersal routes for these and other aquatic and semiaquatic organisms preadapted for conditions in and along the canals.
It is suggested that this mite and other acarine taxa may be preadapted to shift between arthropod hosts covered with chitinous sclerites and vertebrate hosts covered with keratinous scales.
Tyndale-Biscoe argues that the small, early marsupials prevailed because they were preadapted to the arid environment that developed in Australia after it separated from Antarctica about 45 million years ago.
The argument is that preadapted settlers were necessarily effective settlers, and hence, if they were first arrivals in an area, they established the first effective settlement.
Gordon (1961) suggested phytophagous species are preadapted to detoxify pesticides through feeding antecedents that produce elevated levels of detoxification enzymes from exposure to dietary allelochemicals in host plants.