Kümmerli, R. & Frank, S. A. 2023. Evolutionary explanations for heterogenous behavior in clonal bacterial populations. Trends in Microbiology (in press).

Cellular heterogeneity in clonal bacterial populations is widespread. Division of labor and bet hedging are common adaptive explanations for the function of such heterogeneity. We suggest group-level phenotypes via shareable molecules and variation in cellular vigor as two alternative evolutionary explanations for bacterial cellular heterogeneity.