Principles of Animal Design: The Optimization and Symmorphosis Debate

Principles of Animal Design: The Optimization and Symmorphosis Debate

by Ewald R. Weibel
     
 

ISBN-10: 0521586674

ISBN-13: 9780521586672

Pub. Date: 11/28/2013

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

Animal species show great diversity in design as a result of their adaptation to different life conditions. Is their design optimized? Are animals built economically, with no more structure than that needed to perform their function, as the principle of symmorphosis predicts? There is considerable scientific controversy surrounding these questions because, although…  See more details below

Overview

Animal species show great diversity in design as a result of their adaptation to different life conditions. Is their design optimized? Are animals built economically, with no more structure than that needed to perform their function, as the principle of symmorphosis predicts? There is considerable scientific controversy surrounding these questions because, although there is much evidence suggesting that animals are indeed well designed, evolutionary biology tells us that animals are not "engineered" but result from evolution by natural selection. In this book these highly controversial questions are debated by eminent experts on the basis of a wealth of evidence ranging from the molecular biology and biochemistry of enzyme systems through the study of bone and muscle to the design and function of integrated systems of energy supply and the nervous system. They are discussed from the point of view of physiology and morphology, as well as from that of evolutionary biology. A broad range of biologists interested in functional morphology, whether they are biochemists, physiologists, zoologists, or evolutionary biologists, will find this book a fascinating addition to the literature.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521586672
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
11/28/2013
Pages:
314
Product dimensions:
5.98(w) x 9.02(h) x 0.71(d)

Table of Contents

List of contributors
Preface
In memory of Charles Richard Taylor (1939-1995)
A life with animals: from cat to fish
1Symmorphosis and optimization of biological design: introduction and questions1
2How much structure is enough?11
2.1Overview11
2.2Convergence as an analytical tool in evaluating design13
2.3Evolution of biological safety factors: a cost/benefit analysis21
2.4Symmorphosis and safety factors28
3Evolution of optimal systems37
3.1Overview37
3.2Conceptual and methodological issues in testing the predictions of symmorphosis40
3.3Testing the evolutionary origin and maintenance of symmorphosis48
3.4The concept of symmorphosis applied to growing birds56
4Bone design and biomechanics63
4.1Overview63
4.2Optimality in the design of bony elements64
4.3Optimization of musculoskeletal design - does symmorphosis apply?70
4.4Responses of bone to stress: constraints on symmorphosis78
5Muscles and locomotion87
5.1Overview87
5.2The malleability of skeletal muscle89
5.3Fine tuning the molecular motor of muscle95
5.4Matching muscle performance to changing to changing demand103
5.5Moving on land: optimizing for minimum cost114
5.6Optimization of cost of transport in swimming121
6Design of cells for metabolism129
6.1Overview129
6.2Molecular symmorphosis, metabolic regulation, and metabolons131
6.3Are protein isoforms requisite for optimizing regulation of ATP turnover rates?140
6.4Muscle energy balance in sound production and flight147
6.5Design of glycolytic and oxidative capacities in muscles155
7Lungs and gills for gas exchange165
7.1Overview165
7.2Limits of adaptation in pulmonary gas exchange168
7.3The lungs of the flying vertebrates - birds and bats: is their structure optimized for this elite mode of locomotion?177
7.4Gills of water-breathers: structures with multiple functions186
7.5Factors influencing the optimization of hemoglobin oxygen transport in fish195
8Nutrient supply system203
8.1Overview203
8.2The match between load and capacity during lactation: where is the limit to energy expenditure?205
8.3Optimization in design of the digestive system212
8.4How ruminants adapt and optimize their digestive system "blueprint" in response to resource shifts220
8.5Optimality in complex dynamic systems: constraints, trade-offs, priorities230
9Integrative systems for oxygen and fuel delivery239
9.1Overview239
9.2Symmorphosis and the mammalian respiratory system: what is optimal design and does it exist?241
9.3Adjusting maximal fuel delivery for differences in demand249
9.4The converging pathways for oxygen and substrates in muscle mitochondria255
9.5Fuel specialists for endurance263
10Design of nervous systems269
10.1Overview269
10.2The design of peripheral nerve fibers271
10.3Observing design with compound eyes278
10.4Evolution of a visual system for life without light: optimization via tinkering in blind mole rats288
11How good is best? Some afterthoughts on symmorphosis and optimization299
Index307

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