David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Acta Biotheoretica 34 (1) (1985)
Proteins with nearly the same structure and function (homologous proteins) are found in increasing numbers in phylogenetically different, even very distant taxa (e.g. hemoglobins in vertebrates, in some invertebrates, and even in certain plants). In discussing the origin of those proteins biologists hardly at all consider convergent evolution because the origin of proteins is held to be a random process, at least ultimately, since selection can work only what the random process delivers as having a minimum adaptive value. The repetition of a random process with the same result is considered to be extremely unlikely. The supposed (un)likelihood, however, is almost never determined quantitatively. This paper attempts such a quantitative determination. It appears that the probability for the random origin of a definite protein is greater than what one would expect in view of the enormous number of equally possible nucleotide sequences in the corresponding gene since what is equally possible is not always equally likely. The probability, however, of the convergent evolution of two proteins with approximately the same structure and function is too low to be plausible, even when all possible circumstances are present which seem to heighten the likelihood of such a convergence. If this is so, then the plausibility of a random evolution of two or more different but functionally related proteins seems hardly greater.
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
No categories specified
(categorize this paper)
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Jing Huang & Feng Shi (2005). Support Vector Machines for Predicting Apoptosis Proteins Types. Acta Biotheoretica 53 (1).
Alejandro Balbín & Eugenio Andrade (2004). Protein Folding and Evolution Are Driven by the Maxwell Demon Activity of Proteins. Acta Biotheoretica 52 (3).
I. Walker (1979). The Mechanical Properties of Proteins Determine the Laws of Evolutionary Change. Acta Biotheoretica 28 (4).
William Goodwin (2011). Structure, Function, and Protein Taxonomy. Biology and Philosophy 26 (4):533-545.
Matthew H. Slater (2009). Macromolecular Pluralism. Philosophy of Science 76 (5):851-863.
Darren A. Natale, Cecilia N. Arighi, Winona Barker, Judith Blake, Ti-Cheng Chang, Zhangzhi Hu, Hongfang Liu, Barry Smith & Cathy H. Wu (2007). Framework for a Protein Ontology. BMC Bioinformatics, Nov. 2007, 8(Suppl. 9) 8 (9):S1.
Martin Carrier & Patrick Finzer (2006). Explanatory Loops and the Limits of Genetic Reductionism. International Studies in the Philosophy of Science 20 (3):267 – 283.
Jan Klysik (2001). Concept of Immunomics: A New Frontier in the Battle for Gene Function? Acta Biotheoretica 49 (3).
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads7 ( #192,321 of 1,099,749 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #303,541 of 1,099,749 )
How can I increase my downloads?