Analogy in Biology

Analogy in Biology

 

the external similarity of organisms from various taxonomic groups, as well as of organs or their parts which develop from different initial primordia and have dissimilar structures. Analogy is caused by a common way of life or a common function—that is, by adaptation to similar conditions of existence. Examples of analogy would be the similar streamlined shape of the bodies of aquatic mammals such as whales, porpoises, and fish or the similar appearances of grape tendrils (formed from shoots) and pea tendrils (altered leaves). The concept of analogy as a functional and morphological similarity of organs from different organisms was introduced by Aristotle. R. Owen (1843) further refined this concept to mean a functional similarity, the opposite of homology. C. Darwin (1859) thought that analogy arose in the course of evolution as a result of adaptation to the environment by organisms from remote taxonomic groups which were living under similar conditions.

REFERENCES

Darwin, C. “Proiskhozhdenie vidov.” Soch., vol. 3. Moscow, 1939. Page 608.
Shimkevich, V. M. Biologicheskoe osnovanie zoologii, 5th ed., vols. 1–2. Moscow-Leningrad, 1923–25.
Bliakher, L. Ia. “Analogiia i gomologiia.” In Ideia razvitiia v biologii. Moscow, 1965.
References in periodicals archive ?
Two chapters are devoted to analogy in biology, treating the technique both in terms of the method of division and demonstration.