The Origins of Order: Self-Organization and Selection in Evolution

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Oxford University Press, 10 iun. 1993 - 734 pagini
Stuart Kauffman here presents a brilliant new paradigm for evolutionary biology, one that extends the basic concepts of Darwinian evolution to accommodate recent findings and perspectives from the fields of biology, physics, chemistry and mathematics. The book drives to the heart of the exciting debate on the origins of life and maintenance of order in complex biological systems. It focuses on the concept of self-organization: the spontaneous emergence of order that is widely observed throughout nature Kauffman argues that self-organization plays an important role in the Darwinian process of natural selection. Yet until now no systematic effort has been made to incorporate the concept of self-organization into evolutionary theory. The construction requirements which permit complex systems to adapt are poorly understood, as is the extent to which selection itself can yield systems able to adapt more successfully. This book explores these themes. It shows how complex systems, contrary to expectations, can spontaneously exhibit stunning degrees of order, and how this order, in turn, is essential for understanding the emergence and development of life on Earth. Topics include the new biotechnology of applied molecular evolution, with its important implications for developing new drugs and vaccines; the balance between order and chaos observed in many naturally occurring systems; new insights concerning the predictive power of statistical mechanics in biology; and other major issues. Indeed, the approaches investigated here may prove to be the new center around which biological science itself will evolve. The work is written for all those interested in the cutting edge of research in the life sciences.
 

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The idea behind the book is excellent: epistasis makes gene networks way more complex than we expect from classical population genetics models. The first chapter reviewing NK models is quite inspiring ... Citiți recenzia completă

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Cuprins

Themes
Conceptual Outline of Current Evolutionary Theory
The Structure of Rugged Fitness Landscapes
Biological Implications of Rugged Fitness Landscapes
The Structure of Adaptive Landscapes Underlying Protein Evolution
SelfOrganization and Adaptation in Complex Systems
The Dynamics of Coevolving Systems
Edge of Chaos
The Architecture of Genetic Regulatory Circuits and Its Evolution
The Dynamical Behaviors of Genetic Regulatory
LargeScale Features of Cell Differentiation
Cell Differentiation in Boolean Networks
Generic Properties
Implications for Ontogeny
Cell Types as a Combinatorial Epigenetic Code
Summary

THE CRYSTALLIZATION OF LIFE
The Origin of a Connected Metabolism
Hypercycles and Coding
Models of Functional Integration
Approaches to Studying
Applications to Biological Neural and Economic Systems
Summary
Selection for Cell Types
Morphology Maps and the Spatial Ordering of Integrated Tissues
The Four Color Wheels Model of Positional Specification
Turing and Beyond
Summary
Index

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Despre autor (1993)

Stuart Kauffman, M.D., is a MacArthur Fellow, and a philosopher, biologist, evolutionary theorist, and one of the founders of the discipline known as complexity.

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