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Homeostasis and the Forgotten Vitalist Roots of Adaptation - Springer Through most of the twentieth century, biology’s image as a valid science has been gauged by how closely it adheres to the norms of “objective” sciences like physics, chemistry and mathematics. Strains of biological thought that depart from this norm are deemed non-scientific. This presumes that life is fundamentally a physical, chemical and thermodynamic phenomenon. While this approach has been very fruitful, it is questionable that it can lead to a coherent theory of biology. Définition de la vie, les théories anciennes et la science moderne Dès la plus haute antiquité, des philosophes ou des médecins célèbres ont regardé les phénomènes qui se déroulent dans les êtres vivans comme émanés d’un principe supérieur et immatériel agissant sur la matière inerte et obéissante. Telle est la pensée de Pythagore, de Platon, d’Aristote, d’Hippocrate, acceptée plus tard par les philosophes et les savans mystiques du moyen âge, Paracelse, Van-Helmont et par les scolastiques. Cette conception atteignit dans le cours du XVIIIe siècle son apogée de faveur et d’influence avec le célèbre médecin Stahl, qui lui donna une forme plus nette en créant l’animisme. L’animisme a été l’expression outrée de la spiritualité de la vie ; Stahl fut le partisan déterminé et le plus dogmatique de ces idées perpétuées depuis Aristote. On peut ajouter qu’il en fut le dernier représentant ; l’esprit moderne n’a pas accueilli une doctrine dont la contradiction avec la science était devenue trop manifeste.

Reality - A Thomistic Synthesis: by Pere Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange, O.P. - Complete book online In the first six parts of this work we studied what may be called the dogmatic portion of the Summa. In the seventh part we expounded the moral portions. Our exposition has shown how faithful the saint has remained to his initial announcement [1324] that dogmatic theology and moral theology are not two distinct branches of knowledge, but only two parts of one and the same branch of knowledge. getSharedSiteSession?rc=4&redirect= There are ever more compelling tools available for neuroscience research, ranging from selective genetic targeting to optogenetic circuit control to mapping whole connectomes. These approaches are coupled with a deep-seated, often tacit, belief in the reductionist program for understanding the link between the brain and behavior. The aim of this program is causal explanation through neural manipulations that allow testing of necessity and sufficiency claims. We argue, however, that another equally important approach seeks an alternative form of understanding through careful theoretical and experimental decomposition of behavior. Specifically, the detailed analysis of tasks and of the behavior they elicit is best suited for discovering component processes and their underlying algorithms.

CONFERENCES & WORKSHOPS Spotlight Computer Science and the Evolution of Genetic Information Nancy A. Forbes and Laura F. Landweber When naturalist D’Arcy Thompson described the inner world of the bacterium in his 1917 book, On Growth and Form, he wrote, "…we have come to the edge of a world of which we have no experience, and where all our preconceptions must be recast."1 The sense of wonder Thompson felt as he observed this heretofore unseen subcellular world—and his premonition that it might not fit well into existing biological paradigms—could still apply today when molecular biologists and computer scientists come together to find a common language to explore new questions in biocomputing.

Evolutionary Plasticity and Innovations in Complex Metabolic Reaction Networks Abstract Genome-scale metabolic networks are highly robust to the elimination of enzyme-coding genes. Their structure can evolve rapidly through mutations that eliminate such genes and through horizontal gene transfer that adds new enzyme-coding genes. Using flux balance analysis we study a vast space of metabolic network genotypes and their relationship to metabolic phenotypes, the ability to sustain life in an environment defined by an available spectrum of carbon sources.

Utrum Quia Experientia Decepti Aristoteles Et D. Thomas Causas Posuerunt Aequivocas In Natura Operantes « The Charles De Koninck Project Utrum Quia Experientia Decepti Aristoteles Et D. Thomas Causas Posuerunt Aequivocas In Natura Operantes Text, with a Translation by Bart A. Mazzetti[1] The Image of the World in Antiquity « The Charles De Koninck Project De Formis Coelestibus et Elementalibus in Prima Productione John of St. Thomas, Cursus Philosophicus, V. I, pp. 90 ff. Here we have one of those limit questions in natural philosophy, questions which depend essentially on the image of the world in antiquity. I maintain that one must reject here the two attitudes which are customarily taken towards these questions. The first, the more common among modern scholastics, consists in adopting this image of the world, not as if one claimed to hold it against the teachings of modern experimental science, but rather in the sense that one considers it as indifferent from the philosophical or theological point of view.

Octopuses Do Something Really Strange to Their Genes - The Atlantic Octopuses have three hearts, parrot-like beaks, venomous bites, and eight semi-autonomous arms that can taste the world. They squirt ink, contort through the tiniest of spaces, and melt into the world by changing both color and texture. They are incredibly intelligent, capable of wielding tools, solving problems, and sabotaging equipment. As Sy Montgomery once wrote, “no sci-fi alien is so startlingly strange” as an octopus. Neurogenetic networks for startle-induced locomotion in Drosophila melanogaster Author Affiliations Edited by Daniel L. Hartl, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, and approved June 22, 2008 (received for review May 20, 2008)

Why life is not a thing but a restless manner of being Mike Russell found his moment of inspiration on a warm spring evening in Glasgow in 1983, when his 11-year-old son broke a new toy. The toy in question was a chemical garden, a small plastic tank in which stalagmite-like tendrils grew out of seed crystals placed in a mineral solution. Although the tendrils appeared solid from the outside, when shattered they revealed their true nature: each one was actually a network of hollow tubes, like bundles of tiny cocktail straws. At the time, Russell, a geologist, was struggling to understand an unusual rock he had recently found.