Authors
Lenny Moss
University of Exeter
Abstract
The existence claim of a "genetic program" encoded in the DNA molecule which controls biological processes such as development has been examined. Sources of belief in such an entity are found in the rhetoric of Mendelian genetics, in the informationist speculations of Schrodinger and Delbruck, and in the instrumental efficacy found in the use of certain viral, and molecular genetic techniques. In examining specific research models, it is found that attempts at tracking the source of biological control always leads back to the complex state of a cell as a whole, the organizational structure of which is not itself encoded in the DNA. It is argued that the "genetic program" is not an existing biological entity and its philosophical and heuristic status is challenged.
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The Extended Replicator.Kim Sterelny, Kelly C. Smith & Michael Dickison - 1996 - Biology and Philosophy 11 (3):377-403.
The Machine Conception of the Organism in Development and Evolution: A Critical Analysis.Daniel J. Nicholson - 2014 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 48:162-174.
What is the Developmentalist Challenge?Paul E. Griffiths & Robin D. Knight - 1998 - Philosophy of Science 65 (2):253-258.

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