By Lewis I. Held Jr

How did the zebra particularly get its stripes, and the giraffe its lengthy neck? what's the technological know-how at the back of camel humps, leopard spots, and different animal oddities? Such questions have involved us for hundreds of years, however the increasing box of evo-devo (evolutionary developmental biology) is now supplying, for the 1st time, a wealth of insights and solutions. Taking concept from Kipling's 'Just So Stories', this e-book weaves rising insights from evo-devo right into a narrative that gives startling reasons for the starting place and evolution of qualities around the animal nation. Held's targeted and fascinating sort makes this narrative either enlightening and wonderful, guiding scholars and researchers via even advanced ideas and inspiring a fuller knowing of the most recent advancements within the box. the 1st 5 chapters conceal the 1st bilaterally symmetric animals, flies, butterflies, snakes, and cheetahs. a last bankruptcy surveys fresh effects a couple of menagerie of alternative animals

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Extra resources for How the Snake Lost its Legs: Curious Tales from the Frontier of Evo-Devo

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For convenience relative to h, the basitarsus (here and in o) is from a left leg, despite schemata in b–h, which are right discs. Stages of patterning from center to periphery (radial coordinate). Adapted from refs. [309,636,724,1178]. (j) Cells in the center of the disc that are exposed to both Dpp and Wg (f) express Dll (Distal-less) – a (non-diffusing) homeodomain protein. (k) Dll causes outgrowth wherever it is expressed (denoted by smaller cells in greater numbers) [417,1714], and it turns on the fly’s Epidermal Growth Factor (EGF) homolog (vein) at the disc center [724,1178].

270,423]. b. Effects of the Hox gene Ubx, as verified by (1) disabling Ubx in the haltere or (2) expressing Ubx ectopically in the wing. Flies acquired halteres ß225 MY ago by reshaping their hindwings [2110]. This remarkable transformation was accomplished with a single tool: the repressor protein Ubx [721,1283]. Ubx rewired the circuitry of the hindwing disc as shown here. Arrows denote activation; T-barred lines denote inhibition. Faded letters signify genes that are inhibited by Ubx. Dotted lines are weakened links.

Even a ragged brush would have helped a bit, so fortuitous mutations that implemented only steps (2) and (4) could have given their bearers a leg up, so to speak, on their competitors. For that reason, any mutations that added bristles near rows 7 and 8 on the foreleg would have spread through the population. Scr happened to mediate this increase by turning on there [1877], promoting growth, and spawning bristles. The next upgrade might have occurred when mutations forced the extra bristle cells to stick to one another side-by-side to make transverse rows [965,966].

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