Author: Wiebke Bretting

PhilInBioMed elected 1 of 6 Useful Resources For Biology Enthusiasts

The video platfrom Wiki.ezvid.com is a free-to-use video wiki, where a user is introduced to a concept in the space of a four-to-seven minute video presentation, and then additional text, images, data, and links to third-party information sources are provided to add more detail to each topic. The website aims to answer questions on the Internet in ways that are accessible to anyone, without technical jargon or unnecessary digression.

Recently a video entitled 6 Useful Resources For Biology Enthusiasts has been added and the PhilInBioMed website came in on place three. We are happy that through this video the interdisciplinary apporach of the PhilInBioMed network will become known to a wider audience. We hope it will inspire both scientists and philosophers to take a look at the work done in the network and to join interdisciplinary collaborations.

Two PhilInBioMed members elected members of AIPS

 

 

We are happy to announce that two members of PhilInBioMed, Sabina Leonelli and Thomas Pradeu, have recently been elected to the Académie Internationale de Philosophie des Sciences (AIPS – International Academy for the Philosophy of the Sciences). They join another PhilInBioMed member, Eliott Sober, who is already a member of the Academy.

The aim of the Academy is to reach a synthesis on the fundamental questions of the philosophy of the sciences in an interdisciplinary manner. Founded in 1947 by a Dominican Friar, Father Stanislas Dockx, a philosopher and theologian who was also a physicist and mathematician, the Academy has always counted among its members both philosophers in science and leading scientists interested in philosophical questions. Since 1961 the AIDS organizes an annual conference at different universities throughout the world.

‘What is an Individual Organism? Philosophical Problems’ Conference in Krakow

 

Understanding the origins and nature of biological individual constitute important problems in the biological sciences. For instance, what separates a genuine biological individual from an aggregate of lower units, or from a population of interacting lower entities? Answering these questions could permit us to understand better the status of ant colonies or honey bees, for it is not clear where do they belong. Furthermore, in recent years multispecies ensembles made of host and their symbiotic microorganisms (‘holobionts’), has been called the real unit upon which natural selection act, which has led to a debate involving both biologists and philosophers of biology. The aim of this conference is to explore the philosophical issues that have been raised over the concept of biological individuality. We welcome any submissions that touch those problems, including attempts to answer the following questions:

What makes a group of objects an individual?

Is there one proper way of individualization?

Can we have more than one concept of biological individuality?

What is the role of biological practice in those debates?

How biological individuals evolve?

 

Keynote speakers:

Dominika Włoch-Salamon (Jagiellonian University) is a biologist interested in social behaviour of microorganisms, experimental evolution and programmed cell death.

Learn more about Dominika: http://www.eko.uj.edu.pl/en_GB/zespol-genetyki-ewolucyjnej/badania

 

Pierrick Bourrat (Macquarie University and the University of Sydney) is a philosopher of biology interested in evolutionary theory, and evolutionary individuality.

Learn more abour Pierrick: http://pierrickbourrat.com/

 

General Information

Organizers

Institute of Philosophy, Jagiellonian University

Coordinator: Adrian Stencel

Who can apply?

Philosophers, biologists, medical doctors, and any other scholars, at any point in their career, who are interested in this subject.

Language

English is the conference language.

Where and when will the conference be held?

In Kraków, 11 October 2019.

How to apply?

Send an abstract (maximum 500 words) before 25 August 2019 to: philbio.workshops@gmail.com

All decisions will be made prior to 5 September 2019.

 

University of Pittsburgh joins PhilInBioMed network

The Department of History and Philosophy of Science (HPS) at the University of Pittsburgh has joined the PhilInBioMed international network, making it the 12th institutional member in the network.
HPS aims to investigate science in general, its nature and fundamentals, its origins, and its place in modern politics, culture, and society. Among the current HPS faculty are Collin Allen, Mazviita Chirimuuta, Michael Dietrich, Jonathan Fuller, Eduoard Machery, Sandra Mitchell, and Jim Woodward We say welcome Pittsburgh!

New PhilInBioMed member institution

 

The Department of Philosophy at the University of Cincinnati has joined the PhilInBioMed network. It is now part of one of the nine institutional members of the international network. The department is one of the main centers for the study of philosophy of biology, philosophy of cognitive science, philosophy of mind, and general philosophy of science in the USA. PhilInBioMed members from Cincinnati include Valerie Hardcastle, Tom Polger, and Angela Potochnik.

New Philosophy of Biology section in eLIFE

 

The importance of philosophy in the life sciences is becoming more and more obvious – to philosophers and scientists alike. One marker for the increased awareness is the new "Philosophy of Biology" section of eLIFE. This peer-reviewed journal targets an audience in the biomedical and life science field. The fact that they now welcome spontaneous submissions from philosophers of biology is a major step towards more interdisciplinarity. Among the first to publish in this section are PhilInBioMed members Lucie Laplane, Sabina Leonelli, Kate MacCord, Jane Maienschein and Thomas Pradeu.

 

Summer school: Data & Health

Big data and algorithms are profoundly transforming contemporary medicine.

The program of this interdisciplinary summer school will present the genetic and bioinformatics foundations of this evolution and its philosophical, ethical, legal, sociological and psychological issues. Each session will include a conference and a workshop on a specific case. Students will actively participate in the final synthesis.

Expected sessions

– Big data and health: legal issues

– Data, health and ethical issues

– Brugada syndrome and connectivity map approach

– Big data and medical diagnosis

– From basic research to the patient: contribution of integrated biology in mitochondrial diseases

– Big data and the patient

– Bioinformatics and health

One day in Nantes to visit a research institution and discover the city.

The aim is to provide an overview of a set of problems, related to the use of data in health, thanks to humanities and social sciences methods.The course is intended for students and researchers interested in medicine, genetics, bioinformatic, laws or humanities.

The program will be entirely taught in English.

More information

“Fitness Meets Niche Construction and Symbiosis”, Institute of Philosophy, Jagiellonian University, Kraków 2019

 

 

The term  fitness is used very often in evolutionary biology and plays a central role in  the  theory of evolution. However,  for  decades , the status of this concept has been debated , and  many questions have been raised by  philosophers and biologists alike . What is the definition  of fitness? What does being fitter really mean, in scientific terms ? How  can fitness be  measured ? In  recent years , new ideas  have  emerged within the scientific community  which  might shed some new light on our understanding of fitness. However, their  relationship to  the  debate concerning fitness still need s to be established.  Two things , among many others,  are  particularly  worth mentioning here : first , the theory of niche construction ,  which invites us to  think of  an  environment  not  as  being  granted  to  organisms , but  as  created by them . Thus this  theory  transforms our understanding of environments, a concept which  figures  frequently  in  fitness literature. Second , microbiology teaches us that plants and animals interact with many  symbiotic microorganisms.  Moreover,  these  microbes exert  a  major impact on  the fitness of  these plants and animals ,  thus expanding our knowledge of the factors that determine  fitness. The question is  whether – and  if so,  how – these discoveries influence the debate concerning  fitness. The aim of the workshop is  to  explore this question.

Keynote Speaker:

Lynn Chiu is a philosopher of biology  affiliated with the ImmunoConcept Lab of  the  University of Bordeaux/CNRS , which operates  at the intersection of  biology and philosophy.  Her past research and current interest s concern many important problems  found at the frontiers of  the  philosophy of biology,  such as  the  philosophy of perception, niche  construction,  symbiosis , and biological individuality.  Learn more about Lynn here : https://sites.google.com/view/lynnchiu/

Program (click to enlargen)

 

General Information

Organizers: Institute of Philosophy, Jagiellonian University
Coordinator: Adrian Stencel

Who can apply?

Philosophers, biologists, medical doctors, and any other scholars, at any point in their career,  who are interested in this subject .

Where  and  when  will  the workshop  be held ?

In  Kraków,  6th and 7th of  June 2019 .

How to apply?

Send  an  abstract (max imum 500 words) before 31 March 2019 to:  philbio.workshops@gmail.com
All decision s will be made  prior to 30 April  2019 .

 

This workshop is supported by

 

The epigenetics of inflammaging, new review by Nadini et al.

 
A growing amount of evidences indicates that inflammaging – the chronic, low grade inflammation state characteristic of the elderly – is the result of genetic as well as environmental or stochastic factors.
In their latest review Christine Nadini, Jean-François Moreau, Noémie Gensous, Francesco Ravaioli, Paolo Garagnani and Maria Giulia Bacalini take a closer look how age related epigenetic changes promote inflammaging. Furthermore they discuss the role on envioronmental and microbial stimuli and how they can affect the rate of inflammaging via epigenetic mechanisms.
Find the full article here.

Trends in Cancer: what is the tumor environment?

 
If and how a tumor develops, depends in large part on its surroundings. While scientists agree on the importance of the tumor environment (TE), there is no consensus on how to define and spatially delineate it.
A new paper by Lucie Laplane, Dorothée Duluc, Nicolas Larmonier, Thomas Pradeu and Andreas Bikfalvi lays out six clearly defined layers that surround the tumor: (i) the tumor cell-only environment, (ii) the niche, and the (iii) confined, (iv) proximal, (v) peripheral, and (vi) organismal tumor environment. The authors show the different tumor-promoting or -suppressing mechanisms at work in the different layers and how they impact therapeutic approaches.

 
Click here for more information: The Multiple Layers of the Tumor Environment
Click here for the PDF