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SSS 2009-04-14

时间:2010-05-17 07:58来源:互联网 提供网友:木渐浅。   字体: [ ]
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This is Scientific American's 60-Second Science. I'm Christie Nicholson . Got a minute?

 

Altruism1 poses a problem for the theory of “survival of the fittest.” If we help others at a cost to ourselves, nice-guy behavior should die out, because we are giving others a leg up in competition.

 

But a team at M.I.T. published a paper in Nature that shows one loophole that gives the nice guy a benefit over exploiters. Their experiments were done with yeast2. With no yeast emotions to take into account, scientists can get a clear biological look at the workings of benevolence3.

 

Yeast eat table sugar, but they need to secrete4 an enzyme5 to break it down into simple sugars, like glucose6, their preferred food. Through this process the simple sugars become freely available for other yeast to consume. So, the best strategy might be to never secrete the enzyme—just let your benevolent7 brothers do all the work..

 

Scientists showed, however, that the helpful yeast get special access to a small amount of the sugars produced. And this benefit outweighs8 the cost of helping9 their neighbors. Good to hear there’s something in it for the good guy, even if the guy’s just yeast. Let’s raise a beer to that.

 

Thanks for the minute for Scientific American's 60-Second Science. I'm Christie Nicholson.

 


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1 altruism LxIzO     
n.利他主义,不自私
参考例句:
  • An important feature of moral behaviour is altruism.道德行为一个重要特点就是利他主义。
  • Altruism is crucial for social cohesion.利他主义对社会的凝聚是至关重要的。
2 yeast 7VIzu     
n.酵母;酵母片;泡沫;v.发酵;起泡沫
参考例句:
  • Yeast can be used in making beer and bread.酵母可用于酿啤酒和发面包。
  • The yeast began to work.酵母开始发酵。
3 benevolence gt8zx     
n.慈悲,捐助
参考例句:
  • We definitely do not apply a policy of benevolence to the reactionaries.我们对反动派决不施仁政。
  • He did it out of pure benevolence. 他做那件事完全出于善意。
4 secrete hDezG     
vt.分泌;隐匿,使隐秘
参考例句:
  • The pores of your body secrete sweat.身上的毛孔分泌汗液。
  • Squirrels secrete a supply of nuts for winter.松鼠为准备过冬而藏坚果。
5 enzyme cPozF     
n.酵素,酶
参考例句:
  • Above a certain temperature,the enzyme molecule will become unfolded.超过一定温度,酶分子将会展开。
  • An enzyme that dissolves the fibrin of blood clots.能溶解血凝块中的纤维的酶。
6 glucose Fyiyz     
n.葡萄糖
参考例句:
  • I gave him an extra dose of glucose to pep him up.我给他多注射了一剂葡萄糖以增强他的活力。
  • The doctor injected glucose into his patient's veins.医生将葡萄糖注入病人的静脉。
7 benevolent Wtfzx     
adj.仁慈的,乐善好施的
参考例句:
  • His benevolent nature prevented him from refusing any beggar who accosted him.他乐善好施的本性使他不会拒绝走上前向他行乞的任何一个乞丐。
  • He was a benevolent old man and he wouldn't hurt a fly.他是一个仁慈的老人,连只苍蝇都不愿伤害。
8 outweighs 62d9db1e030eaef3a86321f2e4a5724d     
v.在重量上超过( outweigh的第三人称单数 );在重要性或价值方面超过
参考例句:
  • Her need to save money outweighs her desire to spend it on fun. 她省钱的需要比她花钱娱乐的愿望更重要。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • Its clarity in algebraic and analytical operations far outweighs any drawbacks. 文化代数和解析运算中的清晰性远远胜过任何缺点。 来自辞典例句
9 helping 2rGzDc     
n.食物的一份&adj.帮助人的,辅助的
参考例句:
  • The poor children regularly pony up for a second helping of my hamburger. 那些可怜的孩子们总是要求我把我的汉堡包再给他们一份。
  • By doing this, they may at times be helping to restore competition. 这样一来, 他在某些时候,有助于竞争的加强。
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