Publication 1922

Varela F. J. & Frenk S. (1987) The organ of form: Towards a biological theory of shape. Journal of Social and Biological Structures 10(1): 73–83.
Cells and the extracellular matrix (ECM) immediately surrounding them engage in reciprocal determinations. But the ECM is also a global structure because it is continuous throughout the body. We argue that this local-global articulation is a central element in the determination of an animal’s form, and we show how it participates in all the other dimensions of animal life. Specific experimental implications and further consequences of this view are discussed.
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