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Evolution Biology Dobzhansky


"Nothing in Biology makes sense
except in the light of evolution."

Theodosius Grygorovych Dobzhansky (1900-1975)

Note: a native from Ukraine and a prodigy who became an expert biologist by the age of 15 years - his teacher was Victor Luchnik, a refugee in Kyiv escaping the ravages of the Bolshevik terror in whose honor he named a species of "ladybug" (coccinelidae beetle).  Theo, as he was known in the U.S., was granted a Rockefeller scholarship and emigrated to the United States in 1927 to join the pioneer genetics investigative team of Thomas Hunt Morgan. For not returning to the USSR, Theo was declared a "non person" by the Bolsheviks. In 1937, Theo was recognized as a distinguished geneticist. His broad humanistic, philosophical and scientific mind grasped how to bridge a nearly century long gaps separating Darwinian Evolution, Quantitative Genetics and "single gene" Medelian Genetics. Dobzansky took advantage of being ill in bed to write his classic "Modern Synthesis" under the title "Genetics and the Origin of Species". In contrast, in the USSR, the Boshevik autocrats "managed" science and negated genetics in favor of the unscientific theories of  T. Lysenko (1898-1976) who was an active accomplice in the "liquidation" of geneticists. Regretably, although Ukraine is now an independent country, the Ukrainian Academy of Sciences continues to honor T. Lysenko but has not seen fit to restitute and honor the global scientific impact of  Dobzansky, a recipient of the Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award granted by the U.S.

 

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