On the theoretical role of "genetic coding"

Philosophy of Science 67 (1):26-44 (2000)
The role played by the concept of genetic coding in biology is discussed. I argue that this concept makes a real contribution to solving a specific problem in cell biology. But attempts to make the idea of genetic coding do theoretical work elsewhere in biology, and in philosophy of biology, are probably mistaken. In particular, the concept of genetic coding should not be used (as it often is) to express a distinction between the traits of whole organisms that are coded for in the genes, and the traits that are not.
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