07: Emergence in biology
The standard theory of evolution accounts for organismal change over time through variation and natural selection, but sidesteps the problem of how new traits arise in the first place. Understanding biological emergence has been hampered by the assumption that genes are the sole variable determinants of form and function. In our seminar we will address the neglected evolutionary problems of origination, innovation, and novelty by focusing on the biological physics of multicellular aggregates. We will show how generic properties of these systems underlie embryonic development of bodies and complex organs, and how a core set of pattern motifs have been used repeatedly in the evolution of animal forms. We will discuss how these processes are being addressed and integrated by the exciting new field of evolutionary developmental biology.
Jablonka, E., and Lamb, M. J. (2005). Evolution in Four Dimensions: Genetic, epigenetic, behavioral, and symbolic variation in the history of life.” MIT Press, Cambridge.
Forgacs, G.B. & Newman, S.A. 2005. Biological Physics of the Developing Embryo. Cambridge Univ. Press, Cambridge.
Müller, G.B. & Newman, S.A. (eds.) 2003. Origination of Organismal Form: Beyond the gene in development and evolution. MIT Press, Cambridge.
Müller, G.B. & Newman, S.A. (eds.) 2005. Evolutionary Innovation and Morphological Novelty (Special Issue of the Journal of Experimental Zoology, MDE 304).
Neumann-Held, E. M., and Rehmann-Sutter, C. (2006). Genes in Development: Re-reading the molecular paradigm. Duke University Press, Durham N.C.
Reid, R.G.B. 2007. Biological Emergences: Evolution by Natural Experiment.
MIT Press, Cambridge.
Robert, J. S. (2004). Embryology, Epigenesis, and Evolution: Taking development seriously. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
Head, Department of Theoretical Biology, University of Vienna
|1972-1979Study of Medicine, University of Vienna, MD|
|1978-1983Study of Zoology, University of Vienna, Ph.D.|
|1980-1988Assistant Professor, Department of Anatomy, University of Vienna|
|1990-2001Associate Professor of Anatomy and Embryology, University of Vienna|
|since 1998Chairman of the Konrad Lorenz Institute for Evolution and Cognition Research, Altenberg, Austria|
Professor of Cell Biology and Anatomy, Medical College, New York
|1970-1971Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Biophysics, University of Chicago, IL|
|1971-1972Postdoctoral Fellow, School of Biological Sciences, University of Sussex, U.K.|
|1973Postdoctoral Fellow, Biophysics, University of Chicago, IL|
|1973-1975Instructor, Department of Anatomy, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA|
|1975-1979Assistant Professor, Department of Biological Sciences, SUNY-Albany, NY|
|1979-1984Associate Professor, Department of Cell Biology and Anatomy, New York Medical College, Valhalla, NY|