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Sep. 5th, 2007 (UTC)

Evolution favors genes that make its hosts more likely to reproduce. That's it.
Well, not quite. It favors genes that make its hosts likely to reproduce, its offspring likely to survive long enough to reproduce, and maybe a couple more generation that it can have a direct effect (depending on the species).

Women hit menopause because they help their descendants survival better by helping out as grandmothers than by continuing to attempt reproduction themselves. Men don't because reproduction doesn't much affect their usefulness to later generations.

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