The notion of ‘genetic information’ is extremely controversial. Though dominant in the biological jargon and decisive in the historical development of molecular biology, philosophical thinking typically dismisses it as a vacuous (or even dangerous) metaphor for science that should be abandoned. In this paper, we analyze this notion from the point of view of the philosophy of information. After briefly revising the history of the notion, we show that most of the current usages of ‘genetic information’ are actually metaphorical and theoretically untenable both at the cellular and phenotypic level. But instead of rejecting the notion as a mere metaphor, we propose a way to rescue ‘genetic information’ by considering it as a kind of environmental information, that is information composed by “natural data” arising from the correlation between two systems. Then we highlight the positive and negative features of our proposal. Finally, we suggest that it is only within the ethical discourse that the notion can be fully maintained.
|Titolo:||Beyond the Metaphor of Genetic Information|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2008|
|Enti collegati al convegno:||Fundação Calouste Gulbenkian|
Universidade Nova de Lisboa
|Citazione:||Beyond the Metaphor of Genetic Information / G. Boniolo, S. Giaimo. ((Intervento presentato al convegno Expressions of Analogy tenutosi a Lisbon nel 2008.|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||14 - Intervento a convegno non pubblicato|