What is a gene today?

Griffiths, P. E. (2006). What is a gene today?. In: Anne Farmer and Mariapaola Piccardi, XIV World Congress on Psychiatric Genetics: Abstracts. XIV World Congress on Psychiatric Genetics, Cagliari, Italy, (685-685). 28 October - 1 November 2006. doi:10.1002/ajmg.b.30408

Author Griffiths, P. E.
Title of paper What is a gene today?
Conference name XIV World Congress on Psychiatric Genetics
Conference location Cagliari, Italy
Conference dates 28 October - 1 November 2006
Proceedings title XIV World Congress on Psychiatric Genetics: Abstracts   Check publisher's open access policy
Journal name American Journal of Medical Genetics Part B: Neuropsychiatric Genetics   Check publisher's open access policy
Place of Publication Hoboken, NJ, U.S.A.
Publisher John Wiley & Sons
Publication Year 2006
Sub-type Published abstract
DOI 10.1002/ajmg.b.30408
ISSN 1552-4841
Editor Anne Farmer
Mariapaola Piccardi
Volume 141B
Issue 7
Start page 685
End page 685
Total pages 1
Language eng
Abstract/Summary Historians of genetics agree that multiple conceptions of the gene have coexisted at each stages in the history of genetics and that the resulting partial ambiguity has often contributed to the success of genetics, both because workers in different areas have needed to communicate and to draw on one another’s results despite wrestled with very different scientific challenges, and because empirical findings have often challenged the presuppositions of existing conceptions of the gene. Today, a number of different conceptions of the gene coexist in the biosciences. An ‘instrumental’ gene similar to that of classical genetics retains a critical role in the construction and interpretation of experiments in which the relationship between genotype and phenotype is explored via hybridization between organisms or directly between nucleic acid molecules. It also plays an important theoretical role in the foundations of disciplines such as quantitative genetics and population genetics. A ‘nominal’ gene, defined by the practice of genetic nomenclature, is a critical practical tool and allows communication between bioscientists in a wide range of fields to be grounded in welldefined sequences of nucleotides. This concept, however, does not embody major theoretical insights into genome structure or function. Instead, a ‘post-genomic’ conception of the gene embodies the continuing project of understanding how genome structure supports genome function, but with a deflationary picture of the gene as a structural unit. This final concept of the gene poses a significant challenge to earlier assumptions about the relationship between genome structure and function, and between genotype and phenotype.
Subjects CX
Q-Index Code CX
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Conference Paper
Collection: School of Medicine Publications
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Created: Wed, 15 Aug 2007, 09:29:13 EST