Chapter

Understanding Contemporary Genomics<sup>1</sup>

John Dupré

in Processes of Life

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780199691982
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191738111 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199691982.003.0007
Understanding Contemporary Genomics1

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This chapter offers an overview of the structure, epistemology, and (very briefly) history of contemporary genomics. It asks to what extent the genome contains, or is composed of, anything that corresponds to traditional conceptions of genes. With the exception of what is described as the ‘developmental defect’ gene concept, the answer is found to be negative. However, developmental defect genes typically only correspond to general areas of the genome and not to precise chemical structures. The parts of the genome to be identified for an account of the processes of normal development, on the other hand, are highly diverse, little correlated with traditional genes, and act in ways that are highly dependent on the cellular and higher level environment. Despite its historical development out of genetics, genomics represents a radically different kind of scientific project.

Keywords: genetics; genomics; gene; genome

Chapter.  7961 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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