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  1.  58
    Kevin N. Laland, John Odling-Smee, William Hoppitt & Tobias Uller (2013). More on How and Why: Cause and Effect in Biology Revisited. Biology and Philosophy 28 (5):719-745.
    In 1961, Ernst Mayr published a highly influential article on the nature of causation in biology, in which he distinguished between proximate and ultimate causes. Mayr argued that proximate causes (e.g. physiological factors) and ultimate causes (e.g. natural selection) addressed distinct ‘how’ and ‘why’ questions and were not competing alternatives. That distinction retains explanatory value today. However, the adoption of Mayr’s heuristic led to the widespread belief that ontogenetic processes are irrelevant to evolutionary questions, a belief that has (1) hindered (...)
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  2.  48
    Nicholas Shea, Ido Pen & Tobias Uller (2011). Three Epigenetic Information Channels and Their Different Roles in Evolution. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 24:1178-87.
    There is increasing evidence for epigenetically mediated transgenerational inheritance across taxa. However, the evolutionary implications of such alternative mechanisms of inheritance remain unclear. Herein, we show that epigenetic mechanisms can serve two fundamentally different functions in transgenerational inheritance: (i) selection-based effects, which carry adaptive information in virtue of selection over many generations of reliable transmission; and (ii) detection-based effects, which are a transgenerational form of adaptive phenotypic plasticity. The two functions interact differently with a third form of epigenetic information transmission, (...)
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  3.  27
    Kevin N. Laland, John Odling-Smee, William Hoppitt & Tobias Uller (2013). More on How and Why: A Response to Commentaries. Biology and Philosophy 28 (5):793-810.
    We are grateful to the commentators for taking the time to respond to our article. Too many interesting and important points have been raised for us to tackle them all in this response, and so in the below we have sought to draw out the major themes. These include problems with both the term ‘ultimate causation’ and the proximate-ultimate causation dichotomy more generally, clarification of the meaning of reciprocal causation, discussion of issues related to the nature of development and phenotypic (...)
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  4.  19
    Sinead English, Ido Pen, Nicholas Shea & Tobias Uller (2015). The Information Value of Non-Genetic Inheritance in Plants and Animals. PLoS ONE 10 (1):e0116996.
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  5.  9
    Tobias Uller & Heikki Helanterä (2014). Towards an Evolutionary Developmental Biology of Cooperation? Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 48:267-271.
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  6.  25
    Tobias Uller (2010). The Price Equation and Extended Inheritance. Philosophy & Theory in Biology 2 (20130604).
    The presence of various mechanisms of non-genetic inheritance is one of the main problems for current evolutionary theory according to several critics. Sufficient empirical and conceptual reasons exist to take this claim seriously, but there is little consensus on the implications of multiple inheritance systems for evolutionary processes. Here we use the Price Equation as a starting point for a discussion of the differences between four recently proposed categories of inheritance systems; genetic, epigenetic, behavioral and symbolic. Specifically, we address how (...)
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  7.  9
    Tobias Uller & L. Christoffer Johansson (2003). Human Mate Choice and the Wedding Ring Effect. Human Nature 14 (3):267-276.
    Individuals are often restricted to indirect cues when assessing the mate value of a potential partner. Females of some species have been shown to copy each other’s choice; in other words, the probability of a female choosing a particular male increases if he has already been chosen by other females. Recently it has been suggested that mate-choice copying could be an important aspect of human mate choice as well. We tested one of the hypotheses, the so-called wedding ring effect—that women (...)
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  8.  4
    Heikki Helanterä & Tobias Uller (2010). The Price Equation and Extended Inheritance. Philosophy and Theory in Biology 2 (20160629).
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  9.  1
    N. Shea, I. Pen & Tobias Uller, Three Epigenetic Information Channels and Their Different Roles in Evolution.
    There is increasing evidence for epigenetically mediated transgenerational inheritance across taxa. However, the evolutionary implications of such alternative mechanisms of inheritance remain unclear. Herein, we show that epigenetic mechanisms can serve two fundamentally different functions in transgenerational inheritance: selection-based effects, which carry adaptive information in virtue of selection over many generations of reliable transmission; and detection-based effects, which are a transgenerational form of adaptive phenotypic plasticity. The two functions interact differently with a third form of epigenetic information transmission, namely information (...)
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