The present-day insects should have undergone a reduction of the multiple wing pairs through repression of the homeobox genes associated with regulation of segment characteristics in insects (Engel, 2005). This genetic repression of genes encoding structural proteins unique to unnecessary wings occurred during evolution resulting in the polymorphism of the control genes. The control genes, therefore, were suppressed from expressing transcription factors that could have developed many wings on segment appendages under different environmental stimuli.
Evolutionists equally believe that wings developed from gills. This theory states that wings are independent structures that developed through a unique process away from any of the existing appendages (Hall, 1998). According to Carpenter, wings developed from gills through the evolution of gene expression with similarities between winged and wingless insects. However, it is difficult to obtain a direct link between the insect ancestors and the modern winged insects concerning their evolution of wings. Wings should therefore have evolved at a specific period in evolutionary history despite their structural complexities.
This can be illustrated by the shared characteristics that different insects have in their wings. For instance, a critical study at the veins of insect wings throughout the orders shows similarities in the phylum Pterygota. The thoracic muscles which propel during a flight are virtually the same in many insect species. The pterygotesâ€™ wings were located on the thorax and abdominal insect regions at the beginning of the evolution process, which later resulted in variation in the wing numbers ranging from three to one pair across its orders (Hutchins, 2006).
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