Redundancy, Plasticity, and Detachment: The Implications of Comparative Genomics for Evolutionary Thinking

Philosophy of Science 73 (5):930-946 (2006)
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Radically new or unexpected findings in a science demand an openness to new concepts and styles of explanation. The time is more than ripe for asking ourselves what we have learned from the research program of comparative genomics. Where not long ago the human genome was expected to reveal a close association of complexity with the quantitative expansion of the roster of unique genes, more recent findings, especially in relation to comparisons between human and chimp, have raised the bracing possibility that when it comes to complexity, it may be that `less is more'. But `less is more' is not the only observation or inference that follows from the data. The idea of `progressive detachment' will be introduced and set forth as the most perspicuous conceptual resource for unifying and interpreting the overall findings from comparative genomics to date.



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Lenny Moss
University of Exeter

References found in this work

What Genes Can't Do.Lenny Moss - 2003 - MIT Press.
What Genes Can’t Do.Lenny Moss - 2003 - Journal of the History of Biology 38 (2):383-384.
The Philosophy of Biology: An Episodic History.Marjorie Grene & David Depew - 2004 - New York: Cambridge University Press. Edited by David J. Depew.

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