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Thread: Denis Noble debunking the assumptions of neo-Darwinism

  1. #1 Denis Noble debunking the assumptions of neo-Darwinism 
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    In a recent paper by Denis Noble entitled Physiology is rocking the foundations of evolutionary biology Quote
    The "Modern Synthesis" (Neo-Darwinism) is a mid-twentieth century gene-centric view of evolution, based on random mutations accumulating to produce gradual change through natural selection. Any role of physiological function in influencing genetic inheritance was excluded. The organism became a mere carrier of the real objects of selection: its genes. We now know that genetic change is far from random and often not gradual. Molecular genetics and genome sequencing have deconstructed this unnecessarily restrictive view of evolution in a way that reintroduces physiological function and interactions with the environment as factors influencing the speed and nature of inherited change. Acquired characteristics can be inherited, and in a few but growing number of cases that inheritance has now been shown to be robust for many generations. The twenty-first century can look forward to a new synthesis that will reintegrate physiology with evolutionary biology. you can find the paper online. search for it. any opinions?


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  3. #2  
    Forum Radioactive Isotope skeptic's Avatar
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    Depends what you mean by 'acquired characteristics.'

    We now know of 'temporary' changes to genes caused by chemical alterations to DNA, such as methylation. However, these disappear after only a few generations, and cannot really be called evolution.


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    WYSIWYG Moderator marnixR's Avatar
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    i've always abhorred expressions like "rocking the foundations of evolutionary biology"
    we know that natural selection is an important driving force in evolution, all that's probably happened is that the picture is just a tad less one-dimensional than at first thought

    the fact that you can find exceptions to the rule doesn't necessarily invalidate that rule

    as for searching the internet, could you tell us what title we're supposed to be looking for ? if i'm going to go on a wild goose chase, i'd rather restrict the time i'm going to spend on it
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    Aha. This item isn't directly relevant but I've been looking for the opportunity to link it. Any opportunity will do, so here it is.

    Reproductive Success and Fitness are not the same thing – Greg Laden's Blog

    At first glance RS and Fitness are the same, or similar, but one might immediately notice that RS is a feature of an individual (that has offspring) while fitness is a feature of an allele.
    In an indirect way it might be relevant in that it's about people often mixing up words or concepts or phrases from biology and tangling themselves in their own feet in the process.
    "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." Winston Churchill
    "nature is like a game of Jenga; you never know which brick you pull out will cause the whole stack to collapse" Lucy Cooke
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  6. #5  
    Brassica oleracea Strange's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by marnixR View Post
    i've always abhorred expressions like "rocking the foundations of evolutionary biology"
    But forests, in all his guises, has always loved it. He will latch on to anything that might discredit "Darwinism". And I mean anything: he draws no disticntion between mainstream science extending the model, fringe science, pseudo-science, creationism, spiritualism, sociology, fiction....

    If it says "Darwinism is wrong" or "Darwin was a bad person" then he is all over it. A bit sad really

    Quote Originally Posted by sock puppy
    In a recent paper by Denis Noble entitled Physiology ...
    Couldn't find anything vaguely relevant through Google...

    Edit: it turns out that the title is "Physiology is rocking the foundations of evolutionary biology." (Maybe others realised that, it confused me. )

    The quote in the OP is the abstract of the paper. I doubt forests has read any more than that, based on past form.
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    Administrator KALSTER's Avatar
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    If this is indeed the forests of old, then he'll be removed. Again.
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

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    Things discussed in the video:

    1. DNA is not the sole transmitter of inheritance
    2. The central dogma of molecular biology has been broken, genomes are not isolated from organism or the environment. Transmission of information is not one way.
    3. Gradual accumulations of mutations is not the cause of speciation
    4. Proteins did not all evolve via gradual mutation A major revolution is occurring in evolutionary biology. In this video the President of the International Union of Physiological Sciences, Professor Denis Noble, explains what is happening and why it is set to change the nature of biology and of the importance of physiology to that change. The lecture was given to a general audience at a major international Congress held in Suzhou China. British Biologist Denis Noble Debunks Neo-Darwinism - YouTube
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    Physiology is rocking the foundations of evolutionary biology full link to the paper. neodarwinism has been debunked. as noble explains mutations are not random, not all evolution is gradual and acquired characters can be inherited (which neodarwinism denied).
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    A major revolution is occurring in evolutionary biology. In this video the President of the International Union of Physiological Sciences, Professor Denis Noble, explains what is happening and why it is set to change the nature of biology and the importance of physiology to that change. The lecture was given to a large general audience at a major international Congress in Suzhou, China. The implications of the change extend far beyond biology itself. This video will also interest economists, business leaders, politicians and others who deal with the important social questions that have been raised by ideas in evolutionary biology ever since Darwin wrote his Origin of Species. To share the excitement see reactions worldwide and the article. A new version of the lecture will be given at the Opening of the IUPS 2013 Congress. Answers to questions frequently found on blogsites discussing the video and the article can be found here.

    Key quotations from the article:All the central assumptions of the Modern Synthesis (often also called Neo-Darwinism) have been disproven. Moreover, they have been disproven in ways that raise the tantalising prospect of a totally new synthesis: one that would allow a re-integration of physiological science with evolutionary biology. It is hard to think of a more fundamental change for physiology, and for the conceptual foundations of biology in general.
    My article returns to a more nuanced, less dogmatic, view of evolutionary theory which is much more in keeping with the spirit of Darwin’s own ideas than is the Neo-Darwinist view.
    To Maynard Smith’s comment (“it is hard to conceive of a mechanism whereby it [Lamarckism] could occur”) the reply must be that some of those mechanisms have now been found and they are robust.
    The organism should never have been relegated to the role of mere carrier of its genes.
    source http://musicoflife.co.uk/
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    Gone.
    Strange, tk421 and stonecutter like this.
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

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    Brassica oleracea Strange's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darryl Forests View Post
    Things discussed in the video:

    1. DNA is not the sole transmitter of inheritance
    2. The central dogma of molecular biology has been broken, genomes are not isolated from organism or the environment. Transmission of information is not one way.
    3. Gradual accumulations of mutations is not the cause of speciation
    4. Proteins did not all evolve via gradual mutation
    I have never understood quite what Forests was after (and it was impossible to get any sense from him). If further scientific research confirms that some or all of these ideas are, to some extent, correct then ... so what? Our idea of the complexity of evolution changes again. It may be labelled new-neo-Darwinism. Or something else. I suspect it may just be the word "Darwin" he objects to but... who knows.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Darryl Forests View Post
    Things discussed in the video:

    1. DNA is not the sole transmitter of inheritance
    2. The central dogma of molecular biology has been broken, genomes are not isolated from organism or the environment. Transmission of information is not one way.
    3. Gradual accumulations of mutations is not the cause of speciation
    4. Proteins did not all evolve via gradual mutation
    I have never understood quite what Forests was after (and it was impossible to get any sense from him). If further scientific research confirms that some or all of these ideas are, to some extent, correct then ... so what? Our idea of the complexity of evolution changes again. It may be labelled new-neo-Darwinism. Or something else. I suspect it may just be the word "Darwin" he objects to but... who knows.
    Yep. Trying to explain this to him has failed, no matter who explained it and how many times it was explained. He seems to be more interested in being controversial and against the mainstream than actually trying to learn something.
    Disclaimer: I do not declare myself to be an expert on ANY subject. If I state something as fact that is obviously wrong, please don't hesitate to correct me. I welcome such corrections in an attempt to be as truthful and accurate as possible.

    "Gullibility kills" - Carl Sagan
    "All people know the same truth. Our lives consist of how we chose to distort it." - Harry Block
    "It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it." - Aristotle
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