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Exam 2 Notes - Evolution and development Evolutionary...

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Evolution and development Evolutionary developmental biology - the study of how the course of evolution has been influenced by heritable changes in the development of organisms They now study the changes in genes that regulate development affect the adult forms of organisms Early discoveries showed that many of the genes regulating development are highly conserved – that is, the sequences of these genes have changed remarkably little throughout the course of evolution of multicellular organisms Development uses the same sets of genes throughout the animal kingdom Many of the genes that regulate development in a very different animal species are remarkably similar Most motile animals have bilaterally symmetrical bodies with a head (anterior) and a tail (posterior)and the bodies of many of then are divided into segments The same sets if homeobox genes provide positional information to cells along the anterior-posterior axis of the body in both insect and human bodies When certain insect homeotic genes are mutated, the segments differentiate in the wrong way The bithorax mutation causes the developing insect to form two sets of forewings rather than the normal one pair.
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