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Evolution of Cooperation
Caenorhabditis elegans uses pheromones to signal deteriorating environmental conditions such as crowding caused by a large increase of the population.

In a scenario in which individuals can use social communication to send to and receive signals from others nearby that their local environment is crowded, individuals reliably come to use the signaling to restrict their reproduction when needed. With this action, individuals can also increase their overall reproduction rate as they are able to reduce their reproduction when necessary under crowded conditions. Therefore, when an individual with the capacity for communication is introduced to a noncommunicating population, it is much more likely to become the common ancestor of the entire population than is a noncommunicating individual.

According to Werfel, "What is intriguing is that organisms in this model learn to signal each other when the resources are depleted, then they reduce their reproduction to avoid extinction. The ability to signal and communicate the need to change behavior in the face of low resources is a property of many organisms, even single celled organisms signal each other chemically to change their reproduction. The paper published in PNAS has model organisms that do exactly that. They signal each other when resources become depleted, reduce their reproduction when they receive the signal, and when resources increase, they increase their reproduction."

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