Proportions, Growth, and Taxonomy

Marcelo Sánchez

in Embryos in Deep Time

Published by University of California Press

Published in print April 2012 | ISBN: 9780520271937
Published online September 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520952300 | DOI:
Proportions, Growth, and Taxonomy

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Early ontogeny of complex organisms involves simple cells dividing over and over again, eventually developing into a recognizable organism. It is a magnificent scientific achievement to have discovered this process and the mechanisms behind it at different levels of organization. Usually, two aspects of ontogeny, from conception to death, are treated separately: development and growth. Development concerns cell differentiation and the formation of the basic body pattern, with fundamental structural changes and the first appearance of major features. Growth, in fossils and in living forms, involves changes in size and shape. This chapter discusses fossil growth series and taxonomic issues.

Keywords: fossils; ontogeny; development

Chapter.  2834 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Evolutionary Biology

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