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  1. added 2018-05-31
    Dispositional Properties in Evo-Devo.Christopher J. Austin & Laura Nuño de la Rosa - 2018 - In Laura Nuño de la Rosa & G. Müller (eds.), Evolutionary Developmental Biology. Cham, Switzerland: Springer.
    In identifying intrinsic molecular chance and extrinsic adaptive pressures as the only causally relevant factors in the process of evolution, the theoretical perspective of the Modern Synthesis had a major impact on the perceived tenability of an ontology of dispositional properties. However, since the late 1970s, an increasing number of evolutionary biologists have challenged the descriptive and explanatory adequacy of this “chance alone, extrinsic only” understanding of evolutionary change. Because morphological studies of homology, convergence, and teratology have revealed a space (...)
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  2. added 2018-02-17
    The Proximate–Ultimate Distinction and Evolutionary Developmental Biology: Causal Irrelevance Versus Explanatory Abstraction.Massimo Pigliucci & Raphael Scholl - 2015 - Biology and Philosophy 30 (5):653-670.
    Mayr’s proximate–ultimate distinction has received renewed interest in recent years. Here we discuss its role in arguments about the relevance of developmental to evolutionary biology. We show that two recent critiques of the proximate–ultimate distinction fail to explain why developmental processes in particular should be of interest to evolutionary biologists. We trace these failures to a common problem: both critiques take the proximate–ultimate distinction to neglect specific causal interactions in nature. We argue that this is implausible, and that the distinction (...)
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  3. added 2017-01-16
    Eine neue Sicht der Evolution: Ist es nur der Zufall, der sie leitet?Paul Gottlob Layer - 2016 - BRIEFE Zur Orientierung Im Konflikt Mensch - Erde, Evangelische Akademie Sachsen-Anhalt E.V 121 (4):16-24.
    Nach neodarwinistischem Verständnis der Evolution entstehen neue Organismen letztlich durch rein zufällige Mutationsprozesse auf genetischer Ebene. Ihre Überlebenschancen werden dann durch die jeweilig herrschende Umwelt begünstigt oder unterdrückt. Die Evolution ist demnach nur vom reinen Zufall geleitet. Neuere Einsichten aus Entwicklungsbiologie (EvoDevo) und Epigenetik haben unsere Sicht der Evolutionsabläufe jedoch deutlich erweitert. Dabei kommt der Umwelt eine lenkende Rolle zu, der reine Zufall verliert an Bedeutung. Damit lässt sich naturwissenschaftliches Verständnis wieder besser mit herkömmlichen Schöpfungsbildern versöhnen.
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  4. added 2015-12-31
    The Plant Ontology as a Tool for Comparative Plant Anatomy and Genomic Analyses.Laurel Cooper, Ramona Walls, Justin Elser, Maria A. Gandolfo, Dennis W. Stevenson, Barry Smith & Others - 2013 - Plant and Cell Physiology 54 (2):1-23..
    The Plant Ontology (PO; http://www.plantontology.org/) is a publicly-available, collaborative effort to develop and maintain a controlled, structured vocabulary (“ontology”) of terms to describe plant anatomy, morphology and the stages of plant development. The goals of the PO are to link (annotate) gene expression and phenotype data to plant structures and stages of plant development, using the data model adopted by the Gene Ontology. From its original design covering only rice, maize and Arabidopsis, the scope of the PO has been expanded (...)
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  5. added 2014-05-23
    Between Holism and Reductionism: A Philosophical Primer on Emergence.Massimo Pigliucci - 2013 - Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 112 (2):261-267.
    Ever since Darwin a great deal of the conceptual history of biology may be read as a struggle between two philosophical positions: reductionism and holism. On the one hand, we have the reductionist claim that evolution has to be understood in terms of changes at the fundamental causal level of the gene. As Richard Dawkins famously put it, organisms are just ‘lumbering robots’ in the service of their genetic masters. On the other hand, there is a long holistic tradition that (...)
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  6. added 2014-03-25
    August Weismann on Germ-Plasm Variation.Rasmus Grønfeldt Winther - 2001 - Journal of the History of Biology 34 (3):517-555.
    August Weismann is famous for having argued against the inheritance of acquired characters. However, an analysis of his work indicates that Weismann always held that changes in external conditions, acting during development, were the necessary causes of variation in the hereditary material. For much of his career he held that acquired germ-plasm variation was inherited. An irony, which is in tension with much of the standard twentieth-century history of biology, thus exists – Weismann was not a Weismannian. I distinguish three (...)
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  7. added 2011-08-29
    Varieties of Modules: Kinds, Levels, Origins, and Behaviors.Rasmus Grønfeldt Winther - 2001 - Journal of Experimental Zoology 291:116-129.
    This article began as a review of a conference, organized by Gerhard Schlosser, entitled “Modularity in Development and Evolution.” The conference was held at, and sponsored by, the Hanse Wissenschaftskolleg in Delmenhorst, Germany in May, 2000. The article subsequently metamorphosed into a literature and concept review as well as an analysis of the differences in current perspectives on modularity. Consequently, I refer to general aspects of the conference but do not review particular presentations. I divide modules into three kinds: structural, (...)
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