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Epigenetics and Its Philosophical Implications

LU Qiao-ying;Department of Philosophy,Sun Yat-sen University;  
Epigenetics is the study of heritable changes in gene expression,caused by mechanisms other than changes in genes,and it has become a rapidly developing field in biology in recent years.The results from epigenetics not only challenges the central role of gene in modem genetics,but also causes theoretical debates about the concept of inheritance,epigenetics in evolution and the modification of the widely accepted modem evolutionary synthesis.Based on the understanding of epigenetic mechanisms and the discussion on the concept of inheritance,the debates of the role epigenetics plays in evolution will be better understood,and it will also set lights on the debates about the modification of the modem evolutionary synthesis.
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