Ephestia: The Experimental Design of Alfred Kühn's Physiological Developmental Genetics [Book Review]
David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Journal of the History of Biology 33 (3):535-576 (2000)
Much of the early history of developmental and physiological genetics in Germany remains to be written. Together with Carl Correns and Richard Goldschmidt, Alfred Kühn occupies a special place in this history. Trained as a zoologist in Freiburg im Breisgau, he set out to integrate physiology, development and genetics in a particular experimental system based on the flour moth Ephestia kühniella Zeller. This paper is meant to reconstruct the crucial steps in the experimental pathway that led Kühn and his collaborators at the University of Göttingen, and later at the Kaiser Wilhelm Institutes of Biology and Biochemistry in Berlin, to formulate, in their specific way, what later became known as the "one gene-one enzyme hypothesis." Special attention will be given to the interaction of the different parts of Kühn's Ephestia-based project, which were rooted in different research traditions. The paper retraces how, roughly between 1925 and 1945, these elements came to form a mixed experimental setup composed of genetic, embryological, physiological and, finally, biochemical constituents. Accordingly, emphasis is laid on the development of the terminology in which the results were cast, and how it reflected the hybrid state of an experimental system successively acquiring new epistemic layers
|Keywords||Alfred Kühn Ernst Caspari Ephestia kühniella physiological developmental genetics one gene – one enzyme hypothesis gene action chains eye pigment formation tissue transplantation|
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Gerald L. Geison & Manfred D. Laubichler (2001). The Varied Lives of Organisms: Variation in the Historiography of the Biological Sciences. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 32 (1):1-29.
Marsha L. Richmond (2007). Muriel Wheldale Onslow and Early Biochemical Genetics. Journal of the History of Biology 40 (3):389 - 426.
U. Deichmann (2002). Emigration, Isolation and the Slow Start of Molecular Biology in Germany. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 33 (3):449-471.
Robert Meunier (2012). Stages in the Development of a Model Organism as a Platform for Mechanistic Models in Developmental Biology: Zebrafish, 1970–2000. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 43 (2):522-531.
Robert Meunier (2012). Stages in the Development of a Model Organism as a Platform for Mechanistic Models in Developmental Biology: Zebrafish, 1970–2000. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 43 (2):522-531.
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