Genetics, biology and multifactorial diseases

Acta Biotheoretica 50 (4):323-329 (2002)
The schematic concept of levels of causal interaction is applied to the relation between genetics and biology. The strength of classical formal genetics lies in its power to proceed directly from observations on an external phenotype, to inferences concerning the nature and properties of the fundamental genetic factors. Its weakness comes from the fact that by short-circuiting the causal chain leading from genotype to phenotype, it creates a divorce between genetics and biology. It is argued that in order to reestablish an articulation of genetics and the biology of whole organisms, it will be necessary to study in detail the entire causal chain leading from a difference in a genetic factor to a difference in a corresponding phenotypic character. This proposal is illustrated by a consideration of multifactorial diseases, which appear to be due to strong interactions between a moderate number of distinct loci; the frequency of abnormal alleles at any given locus may be surprisingly high.
Keywords Philosophy   Philosophy of Biology   Evolutionary Biology
Categories (categorize this paper)
Reprint years 2004
DOI 10.1023/A:1022624919610
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 28,829
External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

No citations found.

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Holism and Reductionism: A View From Genetics.Arthur Zucker - 1981 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 6 (2):145-164.
Reduction in Genetics--Biology or Philosophy?David L. Hull - 1972 - Philosophy of Science 39 (4):491-499.
Population Genetics.Roberta L. Millstein & Robert A. Skipper - 2007 - In David L. Hull & Michael Ruse (eds.), The Cambridge Companion to the Philosophy of Biology. Cambridge University Press.
Phenotype-Genotype Dichotomy: An Essay in Theoretical Biology.Piotr Lenartowicz - 1975 - Typis Pontificiae Universitatis Gregorianae.
Mechanism Schemas and the Relationship Between Biological Theories.Tudor M. Baetu - 2011 - In Phyllis McKay Illari Federica Russo (ed.), Causality in the Sciences. Oxford University Press.
The Formal Structure of Genetics and the Reduction Problem.A. Lindenmayer & N. Simon - 1980 - PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1980:160 - 170.

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

9 ( #466,563 of 2,178,195 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #316,497 of 2,178,195 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums