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introns and evolution/higher and lower

Wed Mar 9 17:26:57 EST 1994

I agree wholeheartedly with Larry Moran's message 'Introns
and Evolution' <CMCooy.JsG at gpu.utcc.utoronto.ca> The terms
'higher' and 'lower' when applied to organisms have to
be the most widely misused and most misleading
in biology, with the possible exception of 'primitive'.
This is largely because these terms have no formal
scientific definition. Thus, not everyone's 'higher mammals'
includes the same organisms. Does it mean everything
exept marsupials? Everything except the egg-layers? Or
primates only? It should be remembered that all life
has been evolving for the same amount of time and therefore
higher/lower/primitive/advanced is purely a matter of

It is simple to get around this problem - just say what you mean!

C. Graham Clark, Ph.D.
Laboratory of Parasitic Diseases,
National Institutes of Health,
Bethesda, MD 20892

Ph.: 301-496-4740
FAX: 301-402-4941
e-mail: cge at cu.nih.gov

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