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Unformatted text preview: BioNB 2210: Lecture 35 Nov. 16, 2011 Lecture 35: Darwinian Medicine Professor Paul Sherman Learning Objectives 1. To understand a new approach to health and disease based on evolutionary principles, and its complementarity to traditional medical approaches 2. To learn how to apply Darwinian logic to understanding the occurrence of obesity, lactose intolerance, fever, allergies, morning sickness, and disease virulence We are only at the dawn of Darwinian medicine. Although evolutionary theory has long been the foundation for many branches of biology, adaptationist analyses are just beginning to be applied to medicine (Williams &amp; Nesse, Quart. Rev. Biol. 66: 17, 1991). The principles of evolution by natural selection are finally beginning to inform medicine (Nesse &amp; Williams, Sci. Amer. , 275:86, 1998 [required reading]). A. Traditional Medicine and Darwinian Medicine are complementary not alternative approaches. They address different levels of analysis. Traditional medicine deals with proximate (immediate) reasons for behaviors or symptoms and ways to ameliorate them, whereas Darwinian medicine deals with ultimate (evolutionary) reasons for behaviors or symptoms to help decide whether or not they should be ameliorated. B. Darwinian Medicine does not propose that all bodily functions are adaptations rather, organ systems and physiological responses represent evolutionary trade-offs....
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This note was uploaded on 08/27/2011 for the course BIONB 2210 taught by Professor Seeley during the Fall '10 term at Cornell.
- Fall '10