evolutionary medicine(redirected from Darwinian medicine)
Segen's Medical Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.
evolutionary medicineA paradigm for medical education and study based on the recognition that a failure to take due account of evolution when viewing human physiology, psychology, pathology and anatomy will result in a truncated, less valid and less fruitful understanding. It should, for instance, be recognized that the biological norm for infants and children is to be exposed to many infections-a condition that may be necessary for the ‘normal’ development of the immune system; and that since throughout almost the whole of human evolution life expectancy has been no more than about 30 years, systems have evolved which are largely indifferent to conditions that do not arise until well after that age. There is good reason to believe that affluence may have much more widespread malign effects than merely obesity and that these may include greatly increased susceptibility to various cancers.
Collins Dictionary of Medicine © Robert M. Youngson 2004, 2005