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Adaptation is defined as "the evolutionary process whereby a population becomes better suited to its habitat." Adaptation allows life forms to change in response to situations in their environment, usually for purposes of increasing the likelihood of survival of the species. The term "adaptation" is used to refer to changes in species that are reactions to circumstances of habitat.
Mutation is defined as "changes in a genomic sequence." Discussion of the process of mutation involves examining the changes in DNA and/or RNA that result in changes in a life form. The result of the altered genes after mutation has occurred is usually a slightly changed species. Sometimes, a dramatic change occurs as the result of a significant event such as radiation or chemical exposure or a genetic anomaly.
The two terms should be interpreted in parallel. They don't truly drive each other, but describe different views of the process of evolution and change in species.
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