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Information as a Manifestation of Development
Mount Desert Island Biological Laboratory, Salisbury Cove, ME 04672, USA
Received: 4 November 2010; in revised form: 23 December 2010 / Accepted: 19 January 2011 / Published: 21 January 2011
Abstract: Information manifests a reduction in uncertainty or indeterminacy. As such it can emerge in two ways: by measurement, which involves the intentional choices of an observer; or more generally, by development, which involves systemically mutual (‘self-organizing’) processes that break symmetry. The developmental emergence of information is most obvious in ontogeny, but pertains as well to the evolution of ecosystems and abiotic dissipative structures. In this review, a seminal, well-characterized ontogenetic paradigm—the sea urchin embryo—is used to show how cybernetic causality engenders the developmental emergence of biological information at multiple hierarchical levels of organization. The relevance of information theory to developmental genomics is also discussed.
Keywords: development; ontogeny; animal; embryo; pattern formation; gene regulation; cell differentiation; epigenesis; preformation; gene regulatory network
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MDPI and ACS Style
Coffman, J.A. Information as a Manifestation of Development. Information 2011, 2, 102-116.
Coffman JA. Information as a Manifestation of Development. Information. 2011; 2(1):102-116.
Coffman, James A. 2011. "Information as a Manifestation of Development." Information 2, no. 1: 102-116.