Bacterial species pluralism in the light of medicine and endosymbiosis

Javier Suárez


This paper aims to offer a new argument in defence bacterial species pluralism. To do so, I shall first present the particular issues derived from the conflict between the non-theoretical understanding of species as units of classification and the theoretical comprehension of them as units of evolution. Secondly, I shall justify the necessity of the concept of species for the bacterial world, and show how medicine and endosymbiotic evolutionary theory make use of different concepts of bacterial species due to their distinctive purposes. Finally, I shall show how my argument provides a new source of defence for bacterial pluralism.


bacterial species; endosymbiotic theory; pluralism; species concept; unit of classification; unit of evolution

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