MAKING EVOLUTION RELEVANT IN PSYCHIATRY: EVOLUTIONARY DEVELOPMENTAL BIOLOGY AS A FOUNDATION FOR PSYCHIATRY
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Evolution has tended to hold minimal significance for psychiatry making evolutionary psychiatry a niche sub discipline. This despite many calls for integrating evolution into psychiatry. One of the main impediments to this integration is that the foundation of much evolutionary psychiatry relies heavily upon a specific narrow conception of evolutionary psychology that is at times incompatible with modern evolutionary biology. Evolutionary psychiatry often produces impoverished evolutionary explanations for mental disorders as a result of relying on this impoverished foundation. I argue that a more relevant evolutionary psychiatry must reflect modern evolutionary biology and in particular the incorporation of developmental biology into evolutionary theory and study. Evolutionary developmental biology provides the adequate scientific foundation that is required for evolutionary psychiatry to provide robust evolutionary explanations and make evolution truly relevant to psychiatry. A better foundation will allow evolutionary psychiatry to expand beyond its current role as a niche sub discipline.