Publication 4793

Bechtel W. (2007) Biological mechanisms: Organized to maintain autonomy. In: Boogerd F. C., Bruggeman F. T. & Hofmeyr Ihs Westerhoff I. W. (eds.) Systems biology: Philosophical foundations. Elsevier, Amsterdam: 269–302. Fulltext at https://cepa.info/4793
Mechanistic explanations in biology have continually confronted the challenge that they are insufficient to account for biological phenomena. This challenge is often justified as accounts of biological mechanisms frequently fail to consider the modes of organization required to explain the phenomena of life. This, however, can be remedied by developing analyses of the modes of organization found in biological systems. In this paper I examine Tibor Gánti’s account of a chemoton, which he offers as the simplest chemical system that exhibits characteristics of life, and build from it an account of autonomous systems, characterized following Moreno as active systems that develop and maintain themselves by recruiting energy and raw materials from their environment and deploying it in building and repairing themselves. Although some theorists would construe such self-organizing and self-repairing systems as beyond the mechanistic perspective, I maintain that they can be accommodated within the framework of mechanistic explanation properly construed.

External

External

External

The publication has not yet bookmarked in any reading list

You cannot bookmark this publication into a reading list because you are not member of any
Log in to create one.

There are currently no annotations

To add an annotation you need to log in first

Download statistics

Log in to view the download statistics for this publication
Export bibliographic details as: CF Format · APA · BibTex · EndNote · Harvard · MLA · Nature · RIS · Science