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A Mixed Self: The Role of Symbiosis in Development

Pradeu, Thomas (2011) A Mixed Self: The Role of Symbiosis in Development. Biological Theory, 6. pp. 80-88.

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Abstract

Since the 1950s, the common view of development has been internalist: development is seen as the result of the unfolding of potentialities already present in the egg cell. In this paper I show that this view is incorrect, because of the crucial influence of the environment on development. I focus on a fascinating example, that of the role played by symbioses in development, especially bacterial symbioses, a phenomenon found in virtually all organisms (plants, invertebrates, vertebrates). I claim that we must consequently modify our conception of the boundaries of the developing entity, and I show how immunology can help us in accomplishing this task. I conclude that the developing entity encompasses many elements traditionally seen as “foreign”, while I reject the idea that there is no possible distinction between the organism and its environment.


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Item Type: Published Article or Volume
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Pradeu, Thomasthomas.pradeu@paris-sorbonne.fr
Keywords: development; developmental biology; symbiosis; organism; self; organogenesis; internalism; bacteria; identity; individuality
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology > Developmental Biology
Specific Sciences > Biology > Molecular Biology/Genetics
General Issues > Causation
General Issues > Explanation
General Issues > Models and Idealization
Depositing User: Thomas Pradeu
Date Deposited: 16 Oct 2013 13:05
Last Modified: 16 Oct 2013 13:05
Item ID: 10047
Journal or Publication Title: Biological Theory
Publisher: Springer
Official URL: http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s13752-01...
DOI or Unique Handle: https://doi.org/10.1007/s13752-011-0011-5
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Biology > Developmental Biology
Specific Sciences > Biology > Molecular Biology/Genetics
General Issues > Causation
General Issues > Explanation
General Issues > Models and Idealization
Date: 2011
Page Range: pp. 80-88
Volume: 6
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/10047

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