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Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences

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https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/30100389/historical-biological-essentialism
#1
Michael Devitt
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
August 9, 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/30060909/functional-ecology-s-non-selectionist-understanding-of-function
#2
Antoine C Dussault
This paper reinforces the current consensus against the applicability of the selected effect theory of function in ecology. It does so by presenting an argument which, in contrast with the usual argument invoked in support of this consensus, is not based on claims about whether ecosystems are customary units of natural selection. Instead, the argument developed here is based on observations about the use of the function concept in functional ecology, and more specifically, research into the relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem functioning...
July 27, 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/30122161/the-myth-of-hempel-and-the-dsm-iii
#3
Rachel Cooper, Roger Blashfield
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
August 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29887516/the-biopolitics-of-cfs-me
#4
Nikos Karfakis
This paper argues that Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME) constitutes a biopolitical problem, a scientific object which needs to be studied, classified and regulated. Assemblages of authorities, knowledges and techniques make CFS/ME subjects and shape their everyday conduct in an attempt to increase their supposed autonomy, wellbeing and health. CFS and CFS/ME identities are however made not only through government, scientific, and medical interventions but also by the patients themselves, a biosocial community who collaborates with scientists, educates itself about the intricacies of biomedicine, and contests psychiatric truth claims...
August 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29895411/should-phenomenological-approaches-to-illness-be-wary-of-naturalism
#5
Juliette Ferry-Danini
In some quarters within philosophy of medicine, more particularly in the phenomenological approaches, naturalism is looked upon with suspicion. This paper argues, first, that it is necessary to distinguish between two expressions of this attitude towards naturalism: phenomenological approaches to illness disagree with naturalism regarding various theoretical claims and they disapprove of naturalism on an ethical level. Second, this paper argues that both the disagreement with and the disapproval of naturalism are to a large extent confused...
June 9, 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29866402/on-the-evidentiary-standards-for-nutrition-advice
#6
Saana Jukola
This paper evaluates the application of evidentiary standards originating from evidence-based medicine in nutrition advice. It shows that it is problematic to criticize nutrition recommendations for not being based on randomized controlled trials. Due to practical, ethical and methodological and reasons, it is difficult to conduct rigorous randomized controlled trials for acquiring evidence that is relevant for achieving the goals of population-level nutrition recommendations. Given the non-epistemic goals of the dietary recommendations, criteria of acceptable evidence should be adapted to the goals of the practice and the practical, ethical, and methodological constraints of the situation...
June 1, 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29798816/the-function-of-the-heart-is-not-obvious
#7
Nicholas Binney
It is widely believed that the function of the heart is obviously to pump blood. I argue here that it is not. The definition, presentation, and pathophysiological explanation of heart failure, as well as the measurement of cardiac dysfunction, are not as might be expected if the function of the heart was simply to pump blood. Far from being obvious, many central features of heart failure are still being investigated. This has important implications for philosophical debates about health and disease. According to naturalists like Christopher Boorse, medical practice is founded on a well-established body of physiological knowledge, which provides the one true account of the biological function of organs...
April 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29779797/the-function-of-the-heart-is-historically-contingent
#8
Nicholas Binney
Some philosophers of medicine argue that there are objective facts about the biological function of organs, and that these facts are used to objectively define diseases. The function of the heart is taken to be particularly obvious and well established. Contrary to this, I argue that the function of the heart is not fixed by nature, but rather that it is historically contingent. The disease heart failure results from the dysfunction of the heart. In opposition to the common-sense intuitions of philosophers, medics do not define heart failure simply as a reduced cardiac output, and up to half of patients with heart failure have a normal cardiac output...
April 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29655519/much-ado-about-mice-standard-setting-in-model-organism-research
#9
Rebecca A Hardesty
Recently there has been a practice turn in the philosophy of science that has called for analyses to be grounded in the actual doings of everyday science. This paper is in furtherance of this call and it does so by employing participant-observation ethnographic methods as a tool for discovering epistemological features of scientific practice in a neuroscience lab. The case I present focuses on a group of neurobiologists researching the genetic underpinnings of cognition in Down syndrome (DS) and how they have developed a new mouse model which they argue should be regarded as the "gold standard" for all DS mouse research...
April 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29653763/the-significance-of-levels-of-organization-for-scientific-research-a-heuristic-approach
#10
Daniel S Brooks, Markus I Eronen
The concept of 'levels of organization' has come under fire recently as being useless for scientific and philosophical purposes. In this paper, we show that 'levels' is actually a remarkably resilient and constructive conceptual tool that can be, and in fact is, used for a variety of purposes. To this effect, we articulate an account of the importance of the levels concept seen in light of its status as a major organizing concept of biology. We argue that the usefulness of 'levels' is best seen in the heuristic contributions the concept makes to treating and structuring scientific problems...
April 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29650327/natural-selection-plasticity-and-the-rationale-for-largest-scale-trends
#11
Hugh Desmond
Many have argued that there is no reason why natural selection should cause directional increases in measures such as body size or complexity across evolutionary history as a whole. In this paper I argue that this conclusion does not hold for selection for adaptations to environmental variability, and that, given the inevitability of environmental variability, trends in adaptations to variability are an expected feature of evolution by natural selection. As a concrete instance of this causal structure, I outline how this may be applied to a trend in phenotypic plasticity...
April 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29526494/ancient-dna-a-history-of-the-science-before-jurassic-park
#12
Elizabeth D Jones
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
April 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29295774/a-brain-worth-keeping-waste-value-and-time-in-contemporary-brain-banking
#13
Thomas Erslev
If a temporal rather than spatial concept of waste is adopted, novel categories emerge which are useful for identifying and understanding logics of temporality at play in determining what is kept in contemporary brain banks, and reveal that brain banks are constituted by more than stored materials. First, I apply the categories analytically on a recent UK brain banking discussion among professionals. This analysis highlights the importance of data in brain banks, as well as the centrality of ideas about pasts and futures in the discussions...
February 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29217262/universal-etiology-multifactorial-diseases-and-the-constitutive-model-of-disease-classification
#14
Jonathan Fuller
Infectious diseases are often said to have a universal etiology, while chronic and noncommunicable diseases are said to be multifactorial in their etiology. It has been argued that the universal etiology of an infectious disease results from its classification using a monocausal disease model. In this article, I will reconstruct the monocausal model and argue that modern 'multifactorial diseases' are not monocausal by definition. 'Multifactorial diseases' are instead defined according to a constitutive disease model...
February 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29137849/genera-evolution-and-botanists-in-1940-edgar-anderson-s-survey-of-modern-opinion
#15
Kim Kleinman
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
February 2018: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29191718/-how-nationality-influences-opinion-darwinism-and-palaeontology-in-france-1859-1914
#16
Claudine Cohen
This paper discusses the "non-reception" of Darwin's works and concepts in French palaeontology and palaeoanthropology between 1859 and 1914. Indeed, this integration was difficult, biased and belated, for ideological, intellectual and epistemological reasons: Clémence Royer's biased 1862 translation of Darwin's Origin of Species pulled its ideas toward "social darwinism", making them less attractive to the natural sciences. - French nationalism and the authority of religion, which imposed Cuvier's thinking until late into the century - the dominance of Lamarckian and neo-Lamarckian transformism in France, both in biology and in paleontology, which proposed the notion of orthogenetic laws and environmental determinations, and refused darwinian evolutionary mechanisms - obstacles inherent to the application of Darwin's concepts to palaeontology, namely the impossibility to identify evolutionary mechanisms through the fossil record, which was stressed by Darwin himself and underlined in turn by 19th century French palaeontologists...
December 2017: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29110973/galton-reversion-and-the-quincunx-the-rise-of-statistical-explanation
#17
André Ariew, Yasha Rohwer, Collin Rice
Over the last six decades there has been a consistent trend in the philosophy literature to emphasize the role of causes in scientific explanation. The emphasis on causes even pervades discussions of non-causal explanations. For example, the concern of a recent paper by Marc Lange (2013b) is whether purported cases of statistical explanation are "really statistical" or really causal. Likewise, Michael Strevens (2011) argues that the main task of statistical idealizations is to distinguish between the causal factors that make a difference to the phenomenon to be explained and those that do not...
December 2017: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29042093/manifest-ambiguity-intermediate-forms-variation-and-mammal-paleontology-in-argentina-1830-1880
#18
Irina Podgorny
This paper presents the impact of diverse aspects of Darwin's works on the practices of mammal paleontology in different moments of nineteenth-century Argentina. Starting with Darwin through the publications of Florentino Ameghino, it shows the extraordinary complexity of systematic paleontology that characterized the second half of the nineteenth century. Neither "natural selection" nor "struggle for life" seemed to have shaped the practices of vertebrate paleontology in Argentina. Darwin's earlier work as a voyageur and geologist together with later concerns about intermediate forms and variation allow for an assessment of the impact of Darwin's work on the practice of paleontology in Argentina...
December 2017: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29033228/epigenetics-a-way-to-bridge-the-gap-between-biological-fields
#19
Antonine Nicoglou, Francesca Merlin
The concept of epigenetics has evolved since Waddington defined it from the late 1930s as the study of the causal mechanisms at work in development. It has become a multi-faceted notion with different meanings, depending on the disciplinary context it is used. In this article, we first analyse the transformations of the concept of epigenetics, from Waddington to contemporary accounts, in order to identify its different meanings and traditions, and to come up with a typology of epigenetics throughout its history...
December 2017: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
https://www.readbyqxmd.com/read/29031495/evidence-of-mechanism-in-the-evaluation-of-streptomycin-and-thalidomide
#20
Donald Gillies
This paper considers what evidence is needed to establish the effectiveness and safety of a drug therapy. The claim that A cures D is a particular case of a causal claim in medicine. So the paper begins with a general analysis of the evidence for causal claims in medicine. Such evidence is divided into two types: statistical evidence and evidence of mechanism. These are further divided into observational and interventional, producing a 2x2 classification. It is shown that historically there have different assessments of the importance of these different types of evidence...
December 2017: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
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