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Systems Networks Norms

Objective

Genomic sciences are driving progress in biology at an unprecedented pace, most recently through third-generation sequencing and synthetic biology. These achievements challenge commonly accepted biological concepts and assumptions in the humanities. In this Fellowship I will investigate the impact of genomic sciences on theory development in the social and human sciences, with focus on philosophy and ethics, and develop innovative normative models that align with this new knowledge. Harvard University will provide a unique setting for this investigation through its juxtaposition of front line genomics and medical research with rich humanities resources.
My hypothesis is that systems approaches in biology are replacing traditional ontologies of health and disease - based on compendia of symptoms and test reference ranges - with emergent states and activity levels of nonlinear genetic networks. These concepts will induce substantial changes in objectives of basic research, translation of this research into practice, and, ultimately, the delivery and prioritization of health services. This shift must be assimilated into the philosophy and ethics that appraise these activities.
Research and training at the Church lab at Harvard Medical School, a Center of Excellence in Genomic Science, will propel my academic career and bring innovative knowledge to Europe. The plan will be to work hands-on with genomic scientists to identify and develop specific examples of pathway characterizations that are in the process of replacing current health and disease categories, extrapolate how these foundational changes will translate into basic research and health care practices, and use the network examples to develop a blueprint for a systems biology-relevant normative model. Specific training objectives are framed in the proposal for human systems biology, network theory and analysis tools, medical genetics and ethics, and in the practice of professional scientific leadership.

Field of science

  • /medical and health sciences/basic medicine/medical genetics
  • /humanities
  • /natural sciences/biological sciences/synthetic biology
  • /humanities/philosophy, ethics and religion/ethics
  • /humanities/philosophy, ethics and religion
  • /humanities/philosophy, ethics and religion/philosophy

Call for proposal

FP7-PEOPLE-2011-IOF
See other projects for this call

Funding Scheme

MC-IOF - International Outgoing Fellowships (IOF)

Coordinator

ACADEMISCH ZIEKENHUIS GRONINGEN
Address
Hanzeplein 1
9713 GZ Groningen
Netherlands
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
EU contribution
€ 123 599,90
Administrative Contact
Cisca Wijmenga (Prof.)

Participants (2)

VERENIGING VOOR CHRISTELIJK HOGER ONDERWIJS WETENSCHAPPELIJK ONDERZOEK EN PATIENTENZORG

Participation ended

Netherlands
Address
De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV Amsterdam
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Hans V. Westerhoff (Prof.)
STICHTING VU

Participation ended

Netherlands
EU contribution
€ 230 511,80
Address
De Boelelaan 1105
1081 HV Amsterdam
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Administrative Contact
Yvonne Kops (Dr.)