[메디컬리포트=Liza Tan 기자] Eugene Viktorovich Koonin is a superlative scientist and thought leader whose recent statements have provoked contentious debates about evolution.He recently clarified his position in an interview.
Koonin is a rockstar among scientists the world over, so his radical statements incite uproarious discussion from the scientific community.For instance, in 2009 he seemed to disparage population genetics—an aspect of the Modern Synthesis, which reconciles the work of Charles Darwin and Gregor Mendel—as irrelevant: "Not to mince words, the Modern Synthesis is gone."
Koonin took to Richard Lewontin's perspective on the term "natural selection" as little more than figurative at this point. "No one in the mainstream community now takes selection literally," Koonin says.He's also been cited as viewing biology through the Woese-Goldenfeld lens, calling it "the new condensed matter physics."
Koonin is the author of several groundbreaking books and the leader of the evolutionary genomics group at the U.K.National Center for Biotechnology Information.In an interview, he emphasized in his discursive response to questions about widespread skepticism toward science and biological evolution the importance of introducing people to a reformulation of genomics in terms of population genetics by Mike Lynch.
"Paraphrasing the famous pronouncement of Theodosius Dozhansky, one of the founding fathers of the Modern Synthesis ['Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution'], Lynch wrote in one of his papers: 'Nothing in evolution makes sense except in the sense of population genetics.' That is absolutely true," Koonin said.[메디컬리포트=Liza Tan 기자]