Information

Is there a name for this principle in biological contexts?


This is mostly a question about usage.

There is a probability-related idea that has been used in at least two biological contexts. The idea is that if something happened, it was probably likely to do so.

This has been used in discussions about evolution, in which it is said that while we have trouble imagining circumstances in which self-replicating forms arise, the odds were probably in favor of their emergence when it actually occurred. And in discussions of the existence of intelligent life--it may be prevalent if we make the somewhat natural assumption (among others) that our own emergence was not highly improbable, given the existence of a suitable planet and so on.

Is there a name for this principle? I am familiar with the idea in the context of probability but have thought of it as an 'argument from likelihood' in biology. Also if there is a good description of the idea in a biological context a reference would be appreciated.

The tag is a little arbitrary. Thanks for any suggestions.


It may also be called as Idea of maximum parsimony. It is used in phylogenetics to construct phylogenetic trees which require the least number of evolutionary events.


The principle of least effort / path of least resistance fit pretty well: animals, people, and systems (like evolution or a mechanical system like a machine) will naturally choose the path of least resistance or effort. The principal applies to chemistry (low energy states) and physics (the path an electrical current takes) as well. Occam's Razor fits somewhat too in an abstract sense in that nature favors simple solutions over complex ones. You may find something in thermodynamics as well.


Principles of Zoological Nomenclature

Nomenclature provides names to species and higher taxa, to facilitate communication among zoologists. According to Article 1 of the code:

“Zoological nomenclature is the system of scientific names applied to taxonomic units of animals (taxa) known to occur in nature, whether living or extinct.” The nomenclature should fulfill the following three basic requirements:

Uniqueness: The name of a taxon is like the index number of a file. It gives immediate access to all information in literature, available about a particular taxon. Every name must be unique because it is key to the entire literature. Uniqueness has been achieved by adopting binominal nomenclature, as proposed by Linnaeus in the X edition of Systema Naturae in 1758.

According to binominal nomenclature, each species name should consist of the first generic and second species name. Species name should not duplicate under any genus, e.g. Panthera leo, Panthera tigris, Panthera pardus. A combination of the two makes the name unique.

Universality:Scientific names should be known to all and be universally accepted. Vernacular names would be difficult to keep track of, and scientists will have to learn names in several languages of the world. To avoid this, zoologists have adopted by international agreement a single language, Latin, which is a dead language and therefore does not evolve and is acceptable to everybody.

One need not learn Latin language in order to give name. Any word in any language, if latinized by changing the ending by suffixing –us,-a,or –ensis is acceptable as valid Latin name, e.g., japonica, indicus, chinensis. Use of Latin is also advantageous due to the fact that most of the ancient scientific literature is written either in Latin or Greek and it would be easy to refer to the old literature if names are given in Latin.

Stability: Zoological names would lose their utility if they were changed frequently and arbitrarily. It would create confusion if we call an object spoon today and apple next week. International Code of Zoological Nomenclature has been designed to bring about stability. Taxonomists are bound to follow the rules given in the code before assigning names to taxa. Most of the changes in names are due to taxonomists’ errors. Lot of name changing has taken place during the last 200 years. International Code of Zoological Nomenclature safeguards against frequent name changing.

International Code of Zoological Nomenclature

(Adopted by the 15th International Congress of Zoology (London) and published on November 6, 1961)

The object of the code is to promote stability and universality in the scientific name of animals, and to ensure that each name is unique and distinct.

The Swedish naturalist Carl von Linne’ (1707-1778), who changed his name to a binomen, Carolus Linnaeus, was the father a set of rules of nomenclature published in Critica Botanica (1737), Philosophia Botanica (1751) and in the 10th edition of Systema Naturae (1758). The confusion that prevailed after Linnaeus was solved in the 5th International Congress of Zoology in Berlin in 1901. The original code was, however, adopted in 1904 in the 6th International Congress of Zoology in Bern and published in 1905 in Paris as, “Regles Internationales de la Nomenclature Zoologique.”

The most recent version (a modified version of 1961 code) was published in 1964 in parallel French and English. It was adopted by the 16th International Congress of Zoology, Washington (1963) with modifications in articles 11, 31, 39 and 60.

International Congress of Zoology is a legislative body, which adopts by voting the constitution and proposals put before it by the commission.

International Commission on Zoological Nomenclature is a judicial body elected by the International Congress of Zoology. It is protector of the code and deals with the interpretations, disputes and implementation of the code. Amendments have to be routed through the commission.

International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (1964) is the system of rules and recommendations authorized by the International Congress of Zoology. The object of the code is to promote stability and universality in the scientific names of animals and to ensure that each name is unique and distinct. Code does not restrict the freedom of taxonomic thought and action.

Before the present code, the following codes were prevalent in Europe and U.S.A.:

1. Strickland Code (1842) in Berlin.

2. W.H.Dall Code (1877) in USA.

3. Douville’ Code (1881) in France.

Salient features of the “Code”

The 1964 code consists of a Preamble, 86 Articles, 5 Appendices, a Glossary and a detailed Index, in parallel English and French. Starting date of the code is 1st January 1758 (publication date of the10th edition of Systema naturae).

1. Names must either be Latin or Latinized.

2. Names of taxa higher than species should be uninominal.

3. Name of a species is binomen.

4. Name of a subspecies is a trinomen.

5. Name of a subgenus is placed in parenthesis between genus and species, e.g. Xorides (Gonophonus) nigrus.

6. Family name should end in DAE , e.g. Tipulidae.

7. Genus name should be a noun in nominative singular or treated as such, e.g. Apis, Rana.

8. Species name should be an adjective or noun in nominative singular agreeing in gender with the generic name, e.g. Drosophila obscura, Felis tigris etc. OR a noun standing in apposition to the generic name, e.g. Felis leo.

9. Zoological nomenclature is independent of other systems.

10. All names given to the species from time to time should be mentioned in synoymy.

11. Author’s name is not part of the name. It’s use is optional and is suffixed, e.g. Cancer pagurus Linnaeus.

12. Law of priority: The valid name is the oldest name published and available.

13. Synonymy: Synonyms are different names assigned to the same taxon. They should be mentioned along with the valid taxon, e.g. Erias vitella(=Erias fabia).

14. Homonymy: Homonyms are identical names in spelling for different species of the same genus and for different genera of a family. Junior homonym has to be rejected. Homonymy arises when an existing species’ name is not known to the person assigning a name, or a species with identical name is transferred to the same genus.

15. Holotype: Single specimen on which description of the species is based. Red colored label is fixed on the specimen.

16. Allotype: Specimen of the opposite sex to holotype. Also carries a red label.

17. Paratype: All remaining specimens after the designation of holotype and allotype are assigned the status of paratypes. They carry yellow labels.

18. Syntypes: If no holotype is designated, all specimens that the author studied for the description of the species are called syntypes.

19. Lectotype: In the absence of a holotype, one specimen from syntypes can be designated as Lectotype and rest of the specimens as Paralectotypes.

20. Neotype: If all type-specimens are destroyed, a neotype, that fits the description very well, can be designated under exceptional circumstances.


Top Bioethical Issues

1. Abortion

Abortion refers to the premature ending of a pregnancy which occurred in itself (known as miscarriage or spontaneous abortion) or by force through surgery or taking medications. The topic of abortion raises intense personal issues about many topics such as morals, religion, sexuality, autonomy, politics, and science and medicine.

  • During the abortion, the central question is focused whether or not unborn children (called fetuses) have moral status and significance. Aside from that, questions regarding parental responsibilities and obligations as well as the issue of personhood arise.
  • Although abortion has long been debated in almost all issues in bioethics, there is still no moral consensus achieved.

2. Surrogacy

The next bioethical issue in our list is Surrogacy. Surrogacy refers to the process of assisting the reproduction of parents who are incapable of doing so (e.g.: same-sex couples, single men, single women or man/wife). Most of the time, surrogacy is carried out by women (known as gestational women or gestational surrogate) who carries the child in their womb.

  • The bioethical concern here is the confusion in the identity of the child, whether or not his biological parents are considered his “true” parents.

3. Whole Genome Diagnosis

Advancements in technology are now able to allow researchers and physicians to view and have access to the whole genome of a newborn. Such screening is used to determine the individual’s chances of acquiring and developing certain diseases.

  • However, this process seems to draw criticisms primarily because of the lack of consent from the individual (a.k.a the newborn).

4. Cloning

Cloning refers to the process of creating a new population of genetically-similar and identical naturally occurring organisms. The usual targets for cloning include bacteria, plants, and animals.

  • In particular, the bioethical issues regarding cloning focus on the fact that humans become the subject of such experiments.
  • The moral status of the cloned organism, created mainly for destruction and as a source for organs, has become the primary concern in bioethics. Issues such as health risks to both mother and child, damage to the clone, very low success rates even if there are a lot of trials and samples, psychological effect to the clone, and commodification and commercialization of life itself. Refer to pros and cons of cloning here.

5. Stem Cells

In biology, stems cells are a type of undifferentiated (not mature and undeveloped) cells that can divide and differentiate into specialized cells.

  • The bioethical issue concerning stem cells is pretty much like the issues with cloning.
  • Respect for life per se requires that people show respect to all of its forms. Supporters of bioethics believe that stem cell research violates this notion because the source organism (usually an embryo) is destroyed during the process.
  • While stem cell research canalleviate human diseases and suffering, the creation of stem cell lines may lead to the uncontrolled commodification of cells and life.

6. Eugenics

In philosophy, eugenics refers to the social movement that believes on the possibility of creating the best human society and race by promoting the reproduction of populations with positive or desirable traits while controlling and prohibiting the reproduction of populations with negative or undesirable traits.

  • Eugenics became very popular when Adolf Hitler ordered the killing of disabled and medically unfit people as well as the murdering of the Jews.
  • Because of the advancement of science and technology, many people fear that another era where the principle of genetics will prevail. Ethical issues about eugenics are concerned with the moral principle associated with racial equality and the subjective belief on perfection.

7. Genetically Modified Organisms

GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, are organisms that have been transplanted with a gene or a DNA sequence of interest from another organism. This process is somewhat similar to the process of eugenics wherein an organism with the best traits is produced.

  • However, unlike eugenics, the process of creating GMOs requires works on the genetic level and is usually done in crops and animals.
  • While the production and use and creation of genetically modified organism are still new, with its long-term impacts on health are still yet to be seen, bioethical issues about it are the same with cloning, stem cell research, and eugenics.

8. Healthcare

As alluded to earlier, several technological advancements have paved the way for the improvement in health care.

  • Aside from that, issues regarding the allocation of funds, decision-maker and recipient of the benefit, cost-efficiency, and measurement of success are ethical concerns. Aside from that, many people believe that health care may only promote health inequality.

9. Aged Care

A portion of the world’s population is composed of elderly citizens, and naturally, they become the priority for funding and public policy through the establishments of aged care and other accommodation services.

  • However, similar to health care, these policies raise concerns about who should provide support for the elderly and what should be their standards of living.
  • In addition to that, questions about balance, freedom, and safety are also being asked.

10. Euthanasia

Literally meaning “good death“, euthanasia is the process of intending to end the life an individual tostop his or her pain and suffering. Euthanasia is also loosely called as a mercy-killing, assisted suicide, or doctor-assisted suicide.

  • While some people believe that euthanasia is just a matter of ending a life painlessly, many people (especially those who support bioethics) believe the otherwise.
  • In many countries around the globe, the practice of euthanasia is illegal, regardless of the circumstances.
  • Euthanasia challenges the belief that is concerned with the sanctity and equality of all life forms. Euthanasia is believed to corrupt the practice of medicine as well as undermine the value of suicide prevention.

11. Organ Donation

Organ Donation (Source: Wikimedia)

Despite being almost common, the practice of donating or receiving an organ seem to give rise to ethical issues. Similar to cloning and stem cell research, organ donation have raised numerous moral, societal, and ethical concerns about the use of living people as donors.

  • The first bioethical issue on organ donation is that there is a big shortage of organs for those who need. There are thousands of people on the waiting list to receive the organ transplants either from living or deceased. Check out United Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) for the updated waiting list, statistics around how many people are being added to the list per minute, how many people are getting the transplant and how many people die every day during the transplant surgeries & more.
  • The next bioethical issue on this matter is equal access of organs (aka distributive justice theory) to those who need by the length of waiting time and by their age. According to this theory, the patients who wait for transplant could not move up the waiting list if their poor lifestyle caused the damage to organs (like smoking or substance abuse) over patients who have no control on their diseases.
  • Another biggest ethical issue is that as there is a big demand for organ transplants, there is a fear of illegal organ stealing from livings (human trafficking) without their consent to create organ farming to sell body parts for big prices.

12. Head Transplant

Absurd as it may sound, experiments about the transplantation of an organism’s head to another are being done. In fact, during the 1970s, the first ever head transplant in monkeys have occurred successfully (the recipient only lived for ten days).

  • While such application on humans is still being studied, serious health and bioethical concerns are associated with it. Questions like the reaction of the brain to the new body, as well as the memory and individual identity are of concerns.

13. Cryonics

Cryonics refers the scientific method of freezing a newly-dead individual to reanimate or bring him to life at a later period. Because this process involves the reversing the process of death, several bioethical issues were raised against it.

  • One of the main problems about cryonics is immortality. While immortality is believed by some to be beneficial, supporters of bioethics believe that this idea should not prevail given that the planet is already under the crisis of unsustainable population and limited resources.

14. Bone Conduction

Source: Wikimedia

Bone conduction technology involves the replacement of an individual’s ear bones to transducers that can transmit sounds.

  • Despite being promising, the problem with this technology is that it basically can transform an individual into a billboard with the countless advertisement. In this case, the consent of the individual is not a concern.

15. Artificial Exoskeleton

Last but not the least bioethical issue is the development of an artificial skeleton for the elderly to improve their strength and help them move. This artificial skeleton can give them the ability to walk, run, bend like someone who is younger than them.

  • The bioethical concern with this is the possible abuse that the elderly may experience when they are forced to work longer before and even after retirement age.

In conclusion, we can infer that even in the best case situations, some of the aforementioned scientific methods and medical practices are a dangerous and problematic ethical minefield.


Second Law of Thermodynamics in Biological Systems

As with other biological processes, the transfer of energy is not 100 percent efficient. In photosynthesis, for example, not all of the light energy is absorbed by the plant. Some energy is reflected and some is lost as heat. The loss of energy to the surrounding environment results in an increase of disorder or entropy. Unlike plants and other photosynthetic organisms, animals cannot generate energy directly from the sunlight. They must consume plants or other animal organisms for energy.

The higher up an organism is on the food chain, the less available energy it receives from its food sources. Much of this energy is lost during metabolic processes performed by the producers and primary consumers that are eaten. Therefore, much less energy is available for organisms at higher trophic levels. (Trophic levels are groups that help ecologists understand the specific role of all living things in the ecosystem.) The lower the available energy, the less number of organisms can be supported. This is why there are more producers than consumers in an ecosystem.

Living systems require constant energy input to maintain their highly ordered state. Cells, for example, are highly ordered and have low entropy. In the process of maintaining this order, some energy is lost to the surroundings or transformed. So while cells are ordered, the processes performed to maintain that order result in an increase in entropy in the cell's/organism's surroundings. The transfer of energy causes entropy in the universe to increase.


What are the Biological Theories of Crime?

The positivists (who used experimental or inductive method in making generalisations) rejected the concept of ‘free will’ advocated by the classicists and the neo-classicists and laid emphasis on the doctrine of ‘determinism’.

They paved the way for a philosophy of individualised scientific treatment of criminals, based upon the findings of the physical and social sciences. Lombroso, Ferri and Garofalo were three major positivists who laid stress on the physiological incapacity of an individual or the biogenic or hereditary aspects of criminal behaviour.

(Heredity is the parental contribution made through 46 chromosomes. Of these, two determine sex of the infant and 44 affect other qualities of the body. Combinations and permutations among genes determine an infant’s particular genotype, that is, genetic contribution of an organism).

Lombroso, an Italian physician and professor of clinical psychiatry and criminal anthropology, and described as the “father of criminology”, propounded the theory of evolutionary atavism (also called theory of physical criminal type, or theory of born criminals) in 1876. He claimed that:

(1) Criminals constitute a distinct ‘born’ type.

(2) This type of criminal can be identified by certain physical abnormalities or stigmata or anomalies such as asymmetrical face, large ears, excessively long arms, flattened nose, retreating forehead, tufted and crispy hair, and insensibility to pain, eye defects, and other physical peculiarities.

(3) The stigmata are not the causes of crime but rather the symptoms of atavism (reversion to a more primitive type) or degeneracy. Thus, according to Lombroso, atavism and degeneracy are the basic causes of crime.

(4) A person who is the criminal type cannot refrain from committing crime unless he lives under exceptionally favourite circumstances.

(5) Not only criminals differ from non-criminals in physical characteristics but they (criminals) can also be distinguished according to the type of crime they commit.

Initially, Lombroso came out with only one type of criminals the born criminals (a term which, in fact, was introduced by Ferri) but later on he identified two other types of criminals too: criminality or occasional criminals (who differed from born criminals only in degree, and who indulged in crime owing to precipitating factors in environment, i.e., when they got an opportunity to commit crime), and criminals by passion (who were in complete contrast with the born criminals in terms of nervous and emotional sensitiveness, and in motives of crimes such as love or politics).

Although Lombroso obviously emphasised the biological causes of crime, he did not entirely neglect, as erroneously claimed by many critics, the sociological causes. While going through his later works, one reaches this obvious conclusion.

Lombroso’s research had serious methodological problems. Of these, Reid (op. cit.: 117) has pointed out four: One, he depended on collection of facts which were limited to organic factors. Although, he realised the importance of psychic factors, yet he found them hard to measure.

Two, his method was mainly descriptive and not experimental. Three, his generalisations about atavism and degeneracy left a large gap between theory and fact. Four, his method was largely one of analogy and anecdote, from which he drew his conclusions. Such a method is unscientific for drawing generalisations.

As for the policy towards criminals, Lombroso was of the opinion that if the criminal was not responsible for his or her actions, it made no sense to punish him/her. Instead, we must replace punishment by treatment.

A panel of experts should diagnose the condition of the individual and prescribe appropriate treatment. He thus holds that punitive response, as advocated by classicist theorists, is applicable.

Charles Goring, an English psychiatrist and philosopher, criticised Lombroso’s theory on the basis of his own study in which he measured the characteristics of 3,000 English convicts and a large number of non-criminals in 1913.

He maintained that there was no such thing as a ‘physical criminal type’. However, he himself explained crime on the basis of hereditary factors (1919: 11), using statistical treatment of facts, or what is called statistic-mathematical method. Goring’s work was also criticised because (Reid, 1976: 120-21):

(1) He committed the same errors in statistical analysis for which he had criticised Lombroso. He measured intelligence not by the available Simon-Binet tests but by his own impression of the mental ability of criminals

(2) He completely ignored the impact of environment on crime

(3) The sample of non-criminals which included undergraduate university students, inmates of a hospital, mental patients and soldiers was defective and

(4) He was violently prejudiced against Lombroso.

Garofalo and Ferri had supported Lombroso in his biological school. Garofalo in his book Criminology, published in 1885 (its English translation appeared in 1914), talked of physical differences between criminals and non-criminals, but he differed from Lombroso in the emphasis he (Lombroso) placed on the physical abnormality of the criminal.

Garofalo was not sure whether or not physical abnormality of the criminal was caused by physiological factors. Rejecting Lombroso’s ‘physical anomaly’, he focused on ‘psychic anomaly’ of the criminal and referred to ‘moral degeneracy’.

He admitted that environmental factors might play a role in individual’s criminality but there was one element (organic deficiency) in the criminal which was inherited or somehow acquired early in infancy. He did not believe in the ‘casual’ offender and disagreed with Lombroso (as well as Ferri) in the classification of offenders.

He himself (Criminology, 1914) classified them as typical criminals (murderers), violent criminals, criminals deficient in probity and lascivious criminals. Garofalo believed that since crime was basically the result of an inherited organic deficiency, the criminal could not be reformed. He also criticised the reform plans as suggested by Ferri.

Ferri was another Italian scholar who supported Lombroso’s biological school. He not only coined the term ‘born criminal’ for Lombroso’s ‘atavistic criminal’ but he also talked of three other types: the ‘insane’ (who suffers from some clinical form of mental alienation), the ‘habitual’ (who has acquired the habit of crime), the ‘occasional’ (who commits insignificant criminal acts), and the ‘passionate’. His classification, thus, closely parallels that of Lombroso.

Referring to causes of crime, Ferri (Criminal Sociology, 1917: 54) rejected the classicists’ doctrine of free will and talked of criminal behaviour as the result of interaction between the personality and the environment of a man. In order to be a criminal, it is necessary that the individual should face such personal, physical, and moral conditions and social environment which draw him towards crime.

Ferri believed that crime was primarily caused by society. It can be corrected by making economic, social and political changes in society, like freedom of emigration, changes in tax structure (lower tax on necessities and higher tax on luxuries), providing employment opportunities, cheap houses, electoral reforms, changes in marriage and divorce laws, and so forth. Ferri was also in favour of penal reforms.

Taking Lombroso’s, Garofalo’s, and Ferri’s views together, we may analyse contribution of the positive school of criminology. First, it placed emphasis on empirical research and use of scientific approach to the study of criminal behaviour and on reform of the criminal law.

Two, it drew attention to the principle of determinism in criminality. Three, it introduced the concept of environment in the study of crime. Four, it advocated substituting the indeterminate sentence for the definite sentence.

However, Lombroso’s theory in particular and positivist school in general have been criticised. The main criticisms against Lombroso’s and positivists’ theoretical explanation are:

(1) Lombroso’s collection of facts was confined to organic factors and he neglected psychic and social factors. Garofalo and Ferri, however, did place emphasis on these factors. Hans Eysenck (1977: 77-79) has said: “Criminality is a social concept, not a biological one. The very notion of crime would be meaningless without a context of learning or social experience and of human interaction.

What the studies on heredity have demonstrated is that it is a very strong predisposing factor as far as committing crimes is concerned. But whether the crime is actually committed by an individual or not and the way in which he carries it out is subject to the changing vicissitudes of his everyday life.”

(2) Positivists’ method was mainly descriptive.

(3) Their research samples were often too small and not representative, being taken only from prison populations.

(4) They made no use of control groups or follow-up studies.

(5) Operational definitions of their terms were not ‘ always clear and concise.

(6) They did not use sophisticated statistical analysis.

(7) There were logic-of-science errors in their research as they assumed that institutionalised populations represented criminals.

(8) Their approach has no predictive value because many who have the characteristics they attribute to criminals do not become criminals and many who do not have these characteristics do become criminals.


Literature Cited:

Charbonneau, Mark R., et al. (2016). “Sialylated Milk Oligosaccharides Promote Microbiota-Dependent Growth in Models of Infant Undernutrition.” Cell 164(5): 859-871.

Sprenger, G. A., et al. (2017). “Production of human milk oligosaccharides by enzymatic and whole-cell microbial biotransformations.” Journal of Biotechnology 258: 79-91.

Thomson, P., et al. (2017). “Human milk oligosaccharides and infant gut bifidobacteria: Molecular strategies for their utilization.” Food Microbiology.


What is the Biological Perspective? (with pictures)

The biological perspective is one of the major approaches to doing psychological research, which is focused on the idea that behaviors have biological causes. Also known as physiological psychology or biopsychology, it has strong links with many different sciences, particularly neurology and genetics. Common types of biological studies on behavior include things like the effects of physical child abuse on future adult actions, how injuries such as head trauma affect behavior, or whether or not criminal behavior can be explained by genetics.

Applications

This approach is used in many different types of research, including in comparative psychology, the study of physiological motivators for behavior, and the study of genetic behavioral traits. In terms of comparative psychology, it's used to study how behavior compares across species, particularly humans and other mammals. This is based on the idea that behavior is defined by genetics regardless of the species of the animal being studied.

Psychologists also study the biology behind behavior by looking at how exposure to chemicals affects the body and behavior. This includes both the natural chemicals found in the nervous system and hormones, as well as synthetic chemicals like those found in medications. The findings from this type of research are used in looking at the side effects of drugs and how mood is affected by chemical imbalances in the body.

Additionally, the biological perspective is used in genetics research. Some researchers believe that traits like intelligence or a tendency to having certain mental disorders are inherited genetically. Studies done with this approach minimizes the effect of external things like a person's upbringing, and instead focuses on possible genetic causes of behavior. For instance, a geneticist studying a person with an anger disorder would likely look for inherited biological traits that could cause the person to have a short temper, while another type of researcher might focus more on the person's family life to find the cause.

Strengths and Weaknesses

The main strength of this approach is how its findings are backed up by scientific experiments. Research done from the biological perspective is often seen as very reliable, since it uses a strict scientific methodology to define and study human behaviors. Practical interventions based on the biological perspective have proven reliable, including drug therapies and certain types of neurological surgical procedures.

Despite this, the biological perspective is often seen as limited, since it neglects other possible causes for behavior, like external events in a person's life, the impact of different cultural upbringings, mental states, and emotional desires. For example, a psychologist may conclude that a certain hormone causes a behavioral pattern, while in reality the pattern is linked to a complex interplay of different hormones, genetic influences, and multiple environmental triggers. Additionally, some researchers doubt that the comparative study of other animals provides information relevant to human behavior.

Related Perspectives

The biological perspective is just one school of thought in psychology. Other methods, like humanism or cognitive psychology, focus more on a person's desires and state of mind rather than biological causes for behavior. Similarly, behaviorism focuses mainly on the effect of external motivators, while psychodynamics focuses on how a person's unconscious shapes his or her actions. These approaches overlap with each other in many settings. For instance, if someone was researching juvenile delinquents, he or she would likely look for biological causes of their behavior, like a serotonin imbalance, external factors, like a stressful home life, and psychodynamic factors, like an inferiority complex.


Watch the video: The Principle and Power Of Praying In The Name Of Jesus. Dr. Myles Munroe (January 2022).