in search of mechanisms discoveries across the life sciences

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In Search Of Mechanisms

Author : Carl F. Craver
ISBN : 9780226039824
Genre : Science
File Size : 34. 17 MB
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Neuroscientists investigate the mechanisms of spatial memory. Molecular biologists study the mechanisms of protein synthesis and the myriad mechanisms of gene regulation. Ecologists study nutrient cycling mechanisms and their devastating imbalances in estuaries such as the Chesapeake Bay. In fact, much of biology and its history involves biologists constructing, evaluating, and revising their understanding of mechanisms. With In Search of Mechanisms, Carl F. Craver and Lindley Darden offer both a descriptive and an instructional account of how biologists discover mechanisms. Drawing on examples from across the life sciences and through the centuries, Craver and Darden compile an impressive toolbox of strategies that biologists have used and will use again to reveal the mechanisms that produce, underlie, or maintain the phenomena characteristic of living things. They discuss the questions that figure in the search for mechanisms, characterizing the experimental, observational, and conceptual considerations used to answer them, all the while providing examples from the history of biology to highlight the kinds of evidence and reasoning strategies employed to assess mechanisms. At a deeper level, Craver and Darden pose a systematic view of what biology is, of how biology makes progress, of how biological discoveries are and might be made, and of why knowledge of biological mechanisms is important for the future of the human species.

Mental Mechanisms

Author : William Bechtel
ISBN : 9781136679704
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 59. 39 MB
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A variety of scientific disciplines have set as their task explaining mental activities, recognizing that in some way these activities depend upon our brain. But, until recently, the opportunities to conduct experiments directly on our brains were limited. As a result, research efforts were split between disciplines such as cognitive psychology, linguistics, and artificial intelligence that investigated behavior, while disciplines such as neuroanatomy, neurophysiology, and genetics experimented on the brains of non-human animals. In recent decades these disciplines integrated, and with the advent of techniques for imaging activity in human brains, the term cognitive neuroscience has been applied to the integrated investigations of mind and brain. This book is a philosophical examination of how these disciplines continue in the mission of explaining our mental capacities.

Reasoning In Biological Discoveries

Author : Lindley Darden
ISBN : 1139458612
Genre : Science
File Size : 48. 49 MB
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Reasoning in Biological Discoveries brings together a series of essays, which focus on one of the most heavily debated topics of scientific discovery. Collected together and richly illustrated, Darden's essays represent a groundbreaking foray into one of the major problems facing scientists and philosophers of science. Divided into three sections, the essays focus on broad themes, notably historical and philosophical issues at play in discussions of biological mechanism; and the problem of developing and refining reasoning strategies, including interfield relations and anomaly resolution. Darden summarizes the philosophy of discovery and elaborates on the role that mechanisms play in biological discovery. Throughout the book, she uses historical case studies to extract advisory reasoning strategies for discovery. Examples in genetics, molecular biology, biochemistry, immunology, neuroscience and evolutionary biology reveal the process of discovery in action.

Discovering Complexity

Author : William Bechtel
ISBN : 9780262514736
Genre : Science
File Size : 30. 93 MB
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An analysis of two heuristic strategies for the development of mechanistic models, illustrated with historical examples from the life sciences.

Molecular Mechanisms Of Photosynthesis

Author : Robert E. Blankenship
ISBN : 9781118796962
Genre : Science
File Size : 62. 55 MB
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With the clear writing and accessible approach that have made it the authoritative introduction to the field of molecular photosynthesis, this fully revised and updated edition now offers students and researchers cutting-edge topical coverage of bioenergy applications and artificial photosynthesis; advances in biochemical and genetic methods; as well as new analytical techniques. Chapters cover the origins and evolution of photosynthesis; carbon metabolism; photosynthetic organisms and organelles; and the basic principles of photosynthetic energy storage. The book's website includes downloadable PowerPoint slides.

Life Out Of Sequence

Author : Hallam Stevens
ISBN : 9780226080345
Genre : Science
File Size : 47. 49 MB
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Thirty years ago, the most likely place to find a biologist was standing at a laboratory bench, peering down a microscope, surrounded by flasks of chemicals and petri dishes full of bacteria. Today, you are just as likely to find him or her in a room that looks more like an office, poring over lines of code on computer screens. The use of computers in biology has radically transformed who biologists are, what they do, and how they understand life. In Life Out of Sequence, Hallam Stevens looks inside this new landscape of digital scientific work. Stevens chronicles the emergence of bioinformatics—the mode of working across and between biology, computing, mathematics, and statistics—from the 1960s to the present, seeking to understand how knowledge about life is made in and through virtual spaces. He shows how scientific data moves from living organisms into DNA sequencing machines, through software, and into databases, images, and scientific publications. What he reveals is a biology very different from the one of predigital days: a biology that includes not only biologists but also highly interdisciplinary teams of managers and workers; a biology that is more centered on DNA sequencing, but one that understands sequence in terms of dynamic cascades and highly interconnected networks. Life Out of Sequence thus offers the computational biology community welcome context for their own work while also giving the public a frontline perspective of what is going on in this rapidly changing field.

The New Mechanical Philosophy

Author : Stuart Glennan
ISBN : 9780191085291
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 62. 99 MB
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The New Mechanical Philosophy argues for a new image of nature and of science—one that understands both natural and social phenomena to be the product of mechanisms, and that casts the work of science as an effort to discover and understand those mechanisms. Drawing on an expanding literature on mechanisms in physical, life, and social sciences, Stuart Glennan offers an account of the nature of mechanisms and of the models used to represent them. A key quality of mechanisms is that they are particulars - located at different places and times, with no one just like another. The crux of the scientist's challenge is to balance the complexity and particularity of mechanisms with our need for representations of them that are abstract and general. This volume weaves together metaphysical and methodological questions about mechanisms. Metaphysically, it explores the implications of the mechanistic framework for our understanding of classical philosophical questions about the nature of objects, properties, processes, events, causal relations, natural kinds and laws of nature. Methodologically, the book explores how scientists build models to represent and understand phenomena and the mechanisms responsible for them. Using this account of representation, Glennan offers a scheme for characterizing the enormous diversity of things that scientists call mechanisms, and explores the scope and limits of mechanistic explanation.

Data Centric Biology

Author : Sabina Leonelli
ISBN : 9780226416502
Genre : Science
File Size : 30. 66 MB
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In recent decades, there has been a major shift in the way researchers process and understand scientific data. Digital access to data has revolutionized ways of doing science in the biological and biomedical fields, leading to a data-intensive approach to research that uses innovative methods to produce, store, distribute, and interpret huge amounts of data. In Data-Centric Biology, Sabina Leonelli probes the implications of these advancements and confronts the questions they pose. Are we witnessing the rise of an entirely new scientific epistemology? If so, how does that alter the way we study and understand life—including ourselves? Leonelli is the first scholar to use a study of contemporary data-intensive science to provide a philosophical analysis of the epistemology of data. In analyzing the rise, internal dynamics, and potential impact of data-centric biology, she draws on scholarship across diverse fields of science and the humanities—as well as her own original empirical material—to pinpoint the conditions under which digitally available data can further our understanding of life. Bridging the divide between historians, sociologists, and philosophers of science, Data-Centric Biology offers a nuanced account of an issue that is of fundamental importance to our understanding of contemporary scientific practices.

A New Biology For The 21st Century

Author : National Research Council
ISBN : 0309147867
Genre : Science
File Size : 90. 84 MB
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Now more than ever, biology has the potential to contribute practical solutions to many of the major challenges confronting the United States and the world. A New Biology for the 21st Century recommends that a "New Biology" approach--one that depends on greater integration within biology, and closer collaboration with physical, computational, and earth scientists, mathematicians and engineers--be used to find solutions to four key societal needs: sustainable food production, ecosystem restoration, optimized biofuel production, and improvement in human health. The approach calls for a coordinated effort to leverage resources across the federal, private, and academic sectors to help meet challenges and improve the return on life science research in general.

Antibiotic Resistance

Author : Kateryna Kon
ISBN : 9780128036686
Genre : Medical
File Size : 65. 74 MB
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Antibiotic Resistance: Mechanisms and New Antimicrobial Approaches discusses up-to-date knowledge in mechanisms of antibiotic resistance and all recent advances in fighting microbial resistance such as the applications of nanotechnology, plant products, bacteriophages, marine products, algae, insect-derived products, and other alternative methods that can be applied to fight bacterial infections. Understanding fundamental mechanisms of antibiotic resistance is a key step in the discovery of effective methods to cope with resistance. This book also discusses methods used to fight antibiotic-resistant infection based on a deep understanding of the mechanisms involved in the development of the resistance. Discusses methods used to fight antibiotic-resistant infection based on a deep understanding of mechanisms involved in the development of the resistance Provides information on modern methods used to fight antibiotic resistance Covers a wide range of alternative methods to fight bacterial resistance, offering the most complete information available Discusses both newly emerging trends and traditionally applied methods to fight antibiotic resistant infections in light of recent scientific developments Offers the most up-to-date information in fighting antibiotic resistance Includes involvement of contributors all across the world, presenting questions of interest to readers of both developed and developing countries

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