Diekwisch Lab: History of Science

Tom Diekwisch completed his Ph.D. studies in philosophy with one of Germany’s pre-eminent science philosophers, Professor Peter Janich from the University of Marburg. Janich is one of the fathers of methodical culturalism, a development of the constructivist philosophy of the Erlangen school of philosophy. As a student of Janich, Diekwisch focused on the impact of science culture in modern molecular biology and how science cultural approaches affect our understanding of the mind-body problem. The approach of methodical culturalism was carried over into two history of science publications related to the model system of the un-opposed molar (Holliday et al. 2005, Luan et al. 2007). Diekwisch also contributed to a commemorative article in honor of Wolf-Ernst Reif (Smith et al. 2013).


The Vienna Group of Illinois.Oral Biology as a field of research was largely influenced by a group of Viennese scholars who came to Chicago during the late 1930ies. The photograph shows from left to right member of this distinguished group of clinician-scientists: Maury Massler, Balint Orban, Isaac Schour, Joseph-Peter Weinmann, and Harry Sicher.


Contributions to Journals

Smith, M.M., Johanson, Z, Underwood, C., and Diekwisch, T.G.H. (2013). Pattern formation in development of chondrichthyan dentitions: a review of an evolutionary model. Historical Biology 25, 127-142.

Luan X, Diekwisch TGH. (2007). Vienna-Chicago: the cultural transformation of the model system of the un-opposed molar. Bioessays 29, 819-830.

Holliday, S., Schneider, B., Galang, M.T., Fukui, T., Yamane, A., Luan, X., and Diekwisch, T.G.H. (2005). Bones, Teeth, and Genes: A Genomic Homage to Harry Sicher’s “Axial Movement of Teeth“. World J. Orthodontics 6, 61-70.


Bernhard Gottlieb. While his students emigrated to Chicago, Bernhard Gottlieb, the leader of Vienna’s oral biologists, found a new home at Baylor College of Dentistry in Dallas/TX.