What Is Genetic Equilibrium?

genetic-equilibrium Credit: p.folk / photography/Moment/Getty Images

Genetic equilibrium is the stabilization of genetic mutation within a species. The concept comes from the Hardy-Weinberg principle, and it serves as the measurement for evolutionary change.

In order for equilibrium to occur, no outside reproductive influence that cause diverse genetic mutations can exist. Stabilization also runs counter to natural selection, as reproduction occurs without preferences toward characteristics of certain mates. Mates choose one another at random from a large population to reduce the chances of mutation. Genetic equilibrium is the opposite of evolution, and observation of evolution is only possible in species not currently experiencing genetic equilibrium. Finding a species that meets the requirements of the principle is rare.