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"Charles Darwin"

John van Wyhe
This article examines six main elements in the modern story of the impact of Alfred Russel Wallace's 1855 Sarawak Law paper, particularly in the many accounts of Charles Darwin's life and work. These elements are: Each of these are very frequently repeated as straightforward facts in the popular and scholarly literature. It is here argued that each of these is erroneous and that the role of the Sarawak Law paper in the historiography of Darwin and Wallace needs to be revised.
October 6, 2016: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
Joel I Cohen
INTRODUCTION: In 1836, Charles Darwin returned to England with finches classified and seemingly showing little resemblance. However, subsequent examination by John Gould revealed 13 closely related species endemic to the Galápagos Islands. Despite initial confusion, and Darwin's overlooking to label these birds by island, some 100 years later they had become evolution's icon. The same could be said of Darwin's education and scientific pursuits, beginning in a rough, trial and error manner, lacking direction, but eventually benefitting from an unexpected opportunity that would lead to his theory of natural selection...
2016: SpringerPlus
Hayley Clatterbuck
Charles Darwin and C. Lloyd Morgan forward two influential principles of cognitive ethological inference that yield conflicting results about the extent of continuity in the cognitive traits of humans and other animals. While these principles have been interpreted as reflecting commitments to different senses of parsimony, in fact, both principles result from the same vera causa inferential strategy, according to which "We ought to admit no more causes of natural things, than such as are both true and sufficient to explain their appearances"...
September 16, 2016: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences
Louis Heyse-Moore
During most of his adult life, in counterpoint to his fame in describing the theory of evolution, Charles Darwin was chronically ill. He consulted many doctors with only limited and temporary success. His symptoms were many and varied. His doctors favoured dyspepsia or suppressed gout as the diagnosis. The Water Cure was only effective initially. Many diagnoses have been proposed by physicians since then. Perhaps he suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), not instead of but as well as other physical problems...
September 15, 2016: Journal of Medical Biography
Steven J Franks
When Charles Darwin was exploring the idea of evolution via natural selection, he looked to domesticated species, with the opening chapter of The Origin of Species titled 'Variation Under Domestication' (Darwin ). Domesticated species such as crops are a great example of artificial selection, which Darwin realized was analogous to natural selection. But growing among those carefully selected crop varieties are the unwelcome and unwanted plants we call weeds. Despite the importance of weeds and long-standing interest in their evolution (Baker ), we still know little about how agricultural weeds evolve, and we often fail to take evolution into account when attempting to manage them (Neve et al...
September 2016: Molecular Ecology
Siro Igino Trevisanato
Anaximander's fragments on biology report a theory of evolution, which, unlike the development of other biological systems in the ancient Aegean, is naturalistic and is not based on metaphysics. According to Anaximander, evolution affected all living beings, including humans. The first biological systems formed in an aquatic environment, and were encased in a rugged and robust envelope. Evolution progressed with modifications that enabled the formation of more dynamic biological systems. For instance, after reaching land, the robust armors around aquatic beings dried up, and became brittle, This led to the loss of the armor and the development of more mobile life forms...
August 2016: Acta Medico-historica Adriatica: AMHA
Xiao Xu, Xin Sun, Xue-Song Hu, Yan Zhuang, Yue-Chen Liu, Hao Meng, Lin Miao, He Yu, Shu-Jin Luo
Domestic cats exhibit abundant variations in tail morphology and serve as an excellent model to study the development and evolution of vertebrate tails. Cats with shortened and kinked tails were first recorded in the Malayan archipelago by Charles Darwin in 1868 and remain quite common today in Southeast and East Asia. To elucidate the genetic basis of short tails in Asian cats, we built a pedigree of 13 cats segregating at the trait with a founder from southern China and performed linkage mapping based on whole genome sequencing data from the pedigree...
2016: Scientific Reports
P B Persson, A Bondke Persson
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
October 2016: Acta Physiologica
Glyn Everett, Hilary Geoghegan
BACKGROUND: Natural history has a long tradition in the UK, dating back to before Charles Darwin. Developing from a principally amateur pursuit, natural history continues to attract both amateur and professional involvement. Within the context of citizen science and public engagement, we examine the motivations behind citizen participation in the national survey activities of the Open Air Laboratories (OPAL) programme, looking at: people's experiences of the surveys as 'project-based leisure'; their motivations for taking part and barriers to continued participation; where they feature on our continuum of engagement; and whether participation in an OPAL survey facilitated their movement between categories along this continuum...
2016: BMC Ecology
Alistair Sponsel
This essay argues that Charles Darwin's distinctive approach to studying distribution and diversity was shaped by his face-to-face interactions with maritime surveyors during the voyage of H.M.S. Beagle (1831-1836). Introducing their hydrographic surveying methods into natural history enabled him to compare fossil and living marine organisms, to compare sedimentary rocks to present-day marine sediments, and to compare landscapes to submarine topology, thereby realizing Charles Lyell's fanciful ambition for a superior form of geology that might be practiced by an "amphibious being...
June 2016: Isis; An International Review Devoted to the History of Science and its Cultural Influences
Jim Endersby
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
July 2016: Annals of Science
John B West
When Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay reached the summit of Mt. Everest in 1953, it was the culmination of many attempts beginning in 1921. Alexander Kellas had actually predicted as early as 1920 that the mountain could be climbed, but the extreme altitude of 8848 m with the consequent oxygen deprivation had foiled previous attempts. One reason for the success of the 1953 expedition was the work done by the British physiologist Griffith Pugh in 1952 when he studied many of the physiological factors at high altitude including the oxygen requirements...
2016: Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
Jim Endersby
Between 1916 and 1927, botanists in several countries independently resolved three problems that had mystified earlier naturalists - including Charles Darwin: how did the many species of orchid that did not produce nectar persuade insects to pollinate them? Why did some orchid flowers seem to mimic insects? And why should a native British orchid suffer 'attacks' from a bee? Half a century after Darwin's death, these three mysteries were shown to be aspects of a phenomenon now known as pseudocopulation, whereby male insects are deceived into attempting to mate with the orchid's flowers, which mimic female insects; the males then carry the flower's pollen with them when they move on to try the next deceptive orchid...
June 2016: British Journal for the History of Science
Bruce Damer
Charles Darwin's original intuition that life began in a "warm little pond" has for the last three decades been eclipsed by a focus on marine hydrothermal vents as a venue for abiogenesis. However, thermodynamic barriers to polymerization of key molecular building blocks and the difficulty of forming stable membranous compartments in seawater suggest that Darwin's original insight should be reconsidered. I will introduce the terrestrial origin of life hypothesis, which combines field observations and laboratory results to provide a novel and testable model in which life begins as protocells assembling in inland fresh water hydrothermal fields...
2016: Life
Yujian Huang, Yongzhong Wang, Li Tan, Leming Sun, Jennifer Petrosino, Mei-Zhen Cui, Feng Hao, Mingjun Zhang
Over 130 y have passed since Charles Darwin first discovered that the adventitious roots of English ivy (Hedera helix) exude a yellowish mucilage that promotes the capacity of this plant to climb vertical surfaces. Unfortunately, little progress has been made in elucidating the adhesion mechanisms underlying this high-strength adhesive. In the previous studies, spherical nanoparticles were observed in the viscous exudate. Here we show that these nanoparticles are predominantly composed of arabinogalactan proteins (AGPs), a superfamily of hydroxyproline-rich glycoproteins present in the extracellular spaces of plant cells...
June 7, 2016: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Andrea Tedeschi, Takao Omura, Michael Costigan
The importance of genetic diversity in biological investigation has been recognized since the pioneering studies of Gregor Johann Mendel and Charles Darwin. Research in this area has been greatly informed recently by the publication of genomes from multiple species. Genes regulate and create every part and process in a living organism, react with the environment to create each living form and morph and mutate to determine the history and future of each species. The regenerative capacity of neurons differs profoundly between animal lineages and within the mammalian central and peripheral nervous systems...
May 6, 2016: Experimental Neurology
Zuleyma Tang-Martínez
In 1948, Angus Bateman published a paper on fruit flies that tested Charles Darwin's ideas of sexual selection. Based on this one fruit fly study, Bateman concluded that because males are able to produce millions of small sperm, males are likely to behave promiscuously, mating with as many females as possible. On the other hand, because females produce relatively fewer, larger, and presumably more expensive eggs, females are likely to be very discriminating in selecting only one high-quality sexual partner...
May 2016: Journal of Sex Research
Beatriz Pichel
This article aims to determine to what extent photographic practices in psychology, psychiatry and physiology contributed to the definition of the external bodily signs of passions and emotions in the second half of the 19(th) century in France. Bridging the gap between recent research in the history of emotions and photographic history, the following analyses focus on the photographic production of scientists and photographers who made significant contributions to the study of expressions and gestures, namely Duchenne de Boulogne, Charles Darwin, Paul Richer and Albert Londe...
February 2016: History of the Human Sciences
Angelo Vianello, Sabina Passamonti
Functional biologists, like Claude Bernard, ask "How?", meaning that they investigate the mechanisms underlying the emergence of biological functions (proximal causes), while evolutionary biologists, like Charles Darwin, asks "Why?", meaning that they search the causes of adaptation, survival and evolution (remote causes). Are these divergent views on what is life? The epistemological role of functional biology (molecular biology, but also biochemistry, physiology, cell biology and so forth) appears essential, for its capacity to identify several mechanisms of natural selection of new characters, individuals and populations...
2016: Biology Direct
Kuang-Chi Hung
In 1859, Harvard botanist Asa Gray (1810-1888) published an essay of what he called "the abstract of Japan botany." In it, he applied Charles Darwin's evolutionary theory to explain why strong similarities could be found between the flora of Japan and that of eastern North America, which provoked his famous debate with Louis Agassiz (1807-1873) and initiated Gray's efforts to secure a place for Darwinian biology in the American sciences. Notably, although the Gray-Agassiz debate has become one of the most thoroughly studied scientific debates, historians of science remain unable to answer one critical question: How was Gray able to acquire specimens from Japan? Making use of previously unknown archival materials, this article scrutinizes the institutional, instrumental, financial, and military settings that enabled Gray's collector, Charles Wright (1811-1885), to travel to Japan, as well as examine Wright's collecting practices in Japan...
January 20, 2016: Journal of the History of Biology
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