Scientists Detect Severe Cracks In the Idea of the Gene


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1. Scientists have detected “severe cracks in the concept of the gene. Portin and Wilkin (P&W) say a more fitting view of genes must evolve.

2. Here’s a handy reframing metaphor—we risk mistaking the music for the piano in a “jump to the gene” focus (a work-in-progress image to spur co-thinking).

3. P&W note the influence of a misleading “gene for X” view (that “there are individual genes responsible ‘for’ certain complex conditions, e.g., schizophrenia, alcoholism, etc”).

4. Their “crucial point… is that genes… exert their effects within… complex… genetic regulatory networks (GRNs).” They’re “not autonomous” as P&W say is implied by Selfish Gene thinking. For more selfish gene critiques, see “Die Selfish Gene, Die,“ “Every Self is a Society,” “Survival of The Friendliest,” “Every Selfish Gene Must Cooperate.”

5. The GRN view “recognizes the long causal chains that often operate between…

Sasha Harriet

Sasha Harriet

As content editor, I get to do what I love everyday. Tweet, share and promote the best content our tools find on a daily basis.

I have a crazy passion for #music, #celebrity #news & #fashion! I'm always out and about on Twitter.
Sasha Harriet

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