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Seminar: 'The history of metabolic theory's central equation' by Carlos Martinez del Rio

by Michelle Saport  |   

Tuesday, Sept. 4, 2 p.m.
ConocoPhillips Integrated Science Building, Room 105A


Welcome Professor Carlos Martínez del Rio, Department of Zoology and Physiology, University of Wyoming, to campus for a seminar on "The history of metabolic theory's central equation."

About the seminar:
"Body size and temperature are fundamental predictors of biological traits. The metabolic theory of ecology has at its core an equation that predicts biological rates as a function of the combined effect of body size and temperature. This equation is important because it embodies in a simple expression two major currents of thought in biology: biological scaling and thermal relationships. This equation is also controversial. In an attempt to find out why this equation is controversial I trace the history of its elements from Babylonian and Greek geometry to recent efforts. The characters in this tale are among the brightest and most colorful in the history of science, and include Galileo, Lavoisier, Haldane and Kroch. I highlight how current controversies are echoes of past contentions. I propose that contrasting philosophical perspectives about how science is done and presented are at the heart of why biologists either admire or passionately disapprove of metabolic theory's central equation."

Visit the Department of Biological Sciences website for more information.

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