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Working paper

Life history evolution and the origin of multicellularity

The problem of the unicellular-multicellular transition is one of the main issues that is discussing in evolutionary biology. In [1] the fitness of a colony of cells is considered in terms of its two basic components, viability and fecundity. Intrinsic trade-off function of each cell defines a type of cell. We elaborate models providing in [1]. Assuming that all intrinsic trade-off functions are linear, we construct a model with different cell types and show that the differentiation of these cell types leads to full specialization. In addition, we attempt to consider the fact that environmental factors influence the fitness of the colony. Thus, we introduce an energy restriction to the model and show that the situations can be observed where some cells continue to be specialized while other cells become indifferent between the states in which they can be specialized or unspecialized. It is worth pointing out that the models from [1] are not robust. We try to overcome this disadvantage.