HomeBioInteractiveThe Making of the Fittest: The Birth and Death of Genes


Free Resources for Science Teachers and Students

Short Film
The Making of the Fittest: The Birth and Death of Genes


Scientists have pieced together the evolutionary history of the Antarctic icefish. The icefish makes an excellent case study for genetic evolution as both the gain and loss of genes have led to key adaptations.

The discovery of the Antarctic icefish has provided a stunning example of adaptation in an environment both hostile and abundant, where the birth of new genes and the death of old ones have played crucial roles. Researchers Bill Detrich, Christina Cheng, and Art DeVries have pinpointed the genetic changes that enable icefish to thrive without hemoglobin and red blood cells and to avoid freezing in the icy ocean.


  • 2013 New Media Film Festival; First Place (STEAM)
  • 2012 W3 Awards; Silver
  • 2012 Davey Awards; Silver

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This series of five short films features unforgettable examples of the evolutionary process in action.

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HD (M4V)
408 MB
408 MB
SD (M4V)
104 MB
104 MB