Concept18 - Concept 1.2 Biological systems are much more...

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Concept 1.2 Biological systems are much more than the sum of their parts “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” The combination of components can form a more complex organization called a system. Examples of biological systems are cells, organisms, and ecosystems. Consider the levels of life. With each step upward in the hierarchy of biological order, novel properties emerge that are  not present at lower levels. These emergent properties result from the arrangements and interactions between components as  complexity increases. A cell is much more than a bag of molecules. Our thoughts and memories are emergent properties of a complex network of neurons. This theme of emergent properties accents the importance of structural arrangement. The emergent properties of life are not supernatural or unique to life but simply reflect a  hierarchy of structural organization. The emergent properties of life are particularly challenging because of the unparalleled  complexity of living systems. The complex organization of life presents a dilemma to scientists seeking to understand 
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This note was uploaded on 01/04/2012 for the course BSC BSC1005 taught by Professor Orlando,rebecca during the Fall '10 term at Broward College.

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Concept18 - Concept 1.2 Biological systems are much more...

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